The question asked of many in the Hollywood movie industry, and others, appearing before the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) — during the late 1940s to the early 1950s — was, "Are you now, or have you ever, been a member of the Communist party?"
That question was posed at the height of the anti-communist hysteria that swept the country, led most notably by Senator Joseph McCarthy, R-Wis.
Speaking at the 1952 Republican National Convention, McCarthy said, "Our job as Americans and as Republicans is to dislodge the traitors from every place where they’ve been sent to do their traitorous work."
McCarthy and the HUAC are long gone — but not their tactics!
Today we have a new group of "McCarthyites" — Hollywood and entertainment industry celebrities and liberals who make public service videos against Donald Trump urging their fellow liberals and congressional Democrats to do all they can to obstruct his agenda.
Obviously forgetting that their views and politics were soundly rejected in November, they and their friends are doing all they can to intimidate any in their industry who dare support Trump and even worse perform at his inauguration.
Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly was right to call it "reverse McCarthyism."
Today’s intimidation goes further than just performing at the inauguration.
Just like it was in those frightening days of political intimidation, anyone who crosses their ideological lines in the sand and support Trump risks being "blacklisted" as was the case with Hollywood entertainers and professionals whose works or activities were suspected of being communist inspired or supportive.
In fact, 10 Hollywood producers, directors and screenwriters — known as the "Hollywood Ten" — who appeared before HUAC and refused to answer questions regarding possible communist affiliation — went to prison for contempt of Congress and were mostly "blacklisted" by Hollywood studios.
The "blacklist" was implemented by the studios to show their patriotism in view of the communist hysteria of the period. Hence, even the hint or suspicion of being a communist or communist sympathizer could, and did, end careers.
That is apparently the case with those who would dare to publicly support Trump.
Just as the film industry pandered to the HUAC and McCarthy hysteria of that period, today’s entertainment liberal elites have their own way of punishing those whose political views they consider traitorous — such as supporting Donald Trump.
Perform at the Trump inaugural or even show support can mean loss of job opportunities in the movie and entertainment industry. Of course, there is no written directive, but you can bet that calls are made and the word is passed on.
Perform and risk your career.
It is rather ironic that this blacklisting anti Trump hysteria is coming from so-called liberals and is willingly supported by fellow elitists of diverse ethnic and racial heritages.
Most shameful is that many supporting and participating in such blatant political intolerance and repression are members of groups that have historically been the victims of various forms of racial, ethnic and political oppression including Asians, blacks, Jews, and women.
Not realizing or caring that words often have consequences, these latter day McCarthyites, many Democrats in Congress, and their media allies have created a tinder-box of inflammatory anti-Trump vitriol, hatred and intolerance the ignition of which can lead to violence.
Look no further than the disgusting video, portions of which were streamed live over Facebook, of four blacks in Chicago torturing a kidnapped a white special needs victim in an anti-Trump obscenity laced rampage which lasted several hours.
He was, tied up, forced to drink toilet water, beaten and had his hair cut with a knife that sliced his skull. The four have been charged with multiple offenses including with a hate crime.
Why did they yell anti-Trump comments during the torture?
I would not doubt that it is because they felt they had a license to do so from the almost daily bombardment of anti-Trump rhetoric of liberal politicians, media pundits, entertainers and others who urge taking action against Trump accusing him of being a racist and against minorities.
As far as I know, those anti-Trump McCarthyite elitist celebrities have been silent offering no condemnation of this dastardly act.
If the shoe had been on the other foot with a black victim and white assailants yelling racist comments about Obama, you can bet that the president, attorney general, Chicago’s own Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, and those Hollywood celebrities would have rushed to the nearest microphones and cameras to condemn the act — and probably blame Trump!
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters. Read more of his reports — Go Here Now.
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