When it comes to politics, it’s often inevitable that celebrities will chime in with their opinion on how the masses should vote. But in doing so, they tend to alienate a large portion of their fans, so many celebrities are taking pass in this, particularly divisive presidential election.
While fans are probably appreciative that their favorite singer or actor is staying out of this insane election cycle, Matt Miller of Esquire says “fuck that!” Miller makes it very clear that celebrities that support Hillary Clinton are idols that the masses should bow down to, while any that endorse Trump are irrelevant and stupid.
Consider the efforts of Justin Timberlake, who has thrown fundraisers for Hillary Clinton and flew to Tennessee to vote early. Then there’s Jay Z, who is putting on a concert for the Democratic candidate; or Katy Perry, who has appeared in numerous political action videos. Hell, even Scott Baio, who you could hardly consider a celebrity, attempts to articulate fully formed arguments in favor of Trump. These people (well maybe not Baio) are using their influence to contribute to the political process. Any action is better than no action, right?
Miller also believes that any celebrity who avoids endorsing Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump to “protect their brand” is sacrificing “the very values that make them human and a contributing member of this society” and they live a “sad, hallow life” (I assume he meant hollow, but typos happen).
What Miller, and people like him, don’t understand is that celebrities do not owe anyone anything, least of all a political endorsement. Taylor Swift can certainly shout “I’m With Her” if she pleases, but it’s not her obligation simply because she has 156 million followers across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and it is certainly not something that anyone should demand from her. Miller also disaparages other celebs for not taking a side in this election, from Ronda Rousey and The Rock to Cam Newton, Carrie Underwood and Bruno Mars.
It’s not just Miller, though, as we recently wrote about YouTube celebrity Casey Neistat essentially making the same point. For them it is more than just involvement, it is also about shaming anyone who chooses to get involved on the opposing side.
As Michael Jordan said, “Republicans buy shoes, too.” When you alienate your customers, you lose money. No one should be required to do that, and they certainly should not be treated like garbage for staying quiet.