Thursday night the world sat as a witness to a spectacle of yet another unhinged celebrity deciding to yell about whatever they please. Johnny Depp made a drunken decision to reference the assassination of Abraham Lincoln to get a rise out of a Southern England crowd.
He openly said, “I think [Donald] Trump needs help. There are a lot of dark places he could go. I’m not insinuating anything — by the way this will be in the press and it will be horrible — but when was the last time an actor assassinated a president?”
Being a liberal I find it to be a confounding statement to say the least. This is a man known for being a strong supporter of the left, serious drug and alcohol problems, and most recently for a nasty divorce involving some kind of domestic violence. He then followed the statement by saying "Don't worry, I'm not an actor, I lie for a living." What he has claimed appeared to be a threat against the current sitting president. The right is now trying to blame the democrats for his behavior.
Depp's behavior is not unlike the Kathy Griffin stunt, posing for photos with a severed head that is supposed to represent Trump. While Donald Trump's politics and personal affairs have driven so much of the left to feel the same way, there have been marches and protests. Taking the push back to such an extreme level does not make the left look better. It just fulfills the eye-for-an-eye phenomenon. Now let me be straight, Donald Trump is the last person in need of any kind of protection. I am adamantly opposed to the man and all of his behaviors, I cannot defend him in anyway. But his followers prove time and time again to be as unhinged as he is. They call for diplomas to be withheld from students who do not sit through speeches, make lynchings to represent the Obama's, and even go as far as physical violence against anti-Trump protesters. Even on my own campus, the Trump supporting Chapman Republicans climbed on top of the tallest building on campus and threw card stock "Make America Great Again" posters down on Democrat protesters the day after the election. Those stooping to that level should not be lumped in with the radicals.Throwing the kind of threats that Depp and Griffin espouse against the president is not a matter to be taken lightly.
Though the other side of the card is the Bernie Sanders enthusiast, James T. Hodgkinson, open fired at dozens of GOP congressmen at a baseball game less than two weeks ago. He kept a list of the names of Republican representatives in his pocket that the FBI uncovered when they arrested him. The shooter was slain at the scene and Congressman Scalise and his security team are in stable condition.
This was not a celebrity, this was someone who had easy access to firearms and turned himself into a national spectacle, nearly killing a congressman. This was someone who made a spectacle out of the left, chalking us up to be as crazy and unhinged as he is.
And I am beyond sick of it.
I come from a liberal family, in a conservative area so I am no stranger to how it feels to be scrutinized for my political views. That doesn't make me radical. We're living in a polarizing world where if you identify as a Republican, you're a psycho Trumper, and if you're a Democrat, you're an unhinged leftist. The issue is that I may be a registered Democrat but whenever someone hears that, they lump me in with this Johnny Depp stunt.
The truth is that there are radicals on all sides of the spectrum. I believe in my party, I believe in equality of the sexes, I believe in healthcare for all. I do not believe in open firing on politicians because of a difference in the parties.
Living in a world where the crazies are seen as the majority of each party is difficult, and proving the failure of a bipartisan society. Perhaps it's time to accept that our founding fathers were correct in that there should not have been a two party system for our political climate. Johnny Depp, and Kathy Griffin, and even Hodgkinson should not be the faces of the left, and yet they are.
The left is not anarchists, and the right is not Trump. That's just what the world has lead us to believe.