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#647392 - 08/30/08 09:07 PM Politics and the Arts  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
Hello, I have been reading some of the other threads here about politics and I am just curious.
Do you feel that people in the arts should stay out of Politics, at least publicly?
There are so many actors that I used to enjoy watching their movies, then I find out about their Political / Religious views etc. and can’t stand to even hear about them or watch anything they have done afterwards. I know that they have their right to think and believe whatever they want to but, Is it smart for them to alienate so many potential fans by speaking out about their beliefs openly. Some examples I would use are: Tom Cruise, Michael Jackson. These are just two that popped into my head right away but there is a long list of activist actors, musicians,etc. that publicly embrace and promote alternative lifestyles and beliefs. Just seems like shooting yourself in the foot in my opinion… Any thoughts?
Steve

Last edited by Stephen D; 08/30/08 09:07 PM.
#647397 - 08/30/08 09:21 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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cozmicslop Offline
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I'm a liberal but, I love John Wayne's work. Ted Nugents'. Charlton Hestons'. Bruce Willis'. All conservatives.


It would be stupid of me. Downright ignorant, to deprive myself of the joy of a persons' art because I don't like their political views.


#647398 - 08/30/08 09:22 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: cozmicslop]  
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cozmicslop Offline
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I like Toby Keith AND the Dixie Chicks.

#647402 - 08/30/08 09:28 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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Richard Stringfellow Offline
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If by "people in the arts" you mean "successful entertainers", I think they - like everybody else - should stay out of politics unless they can make a positive contribution.

Having said that, I don't think it's possible to make a positive contribution by praising one party over the other. Republicans and Democrats are not the problem. Corruption is the problem.


If you're just going to fan the flame, piss on it!
#647405 - 08/30/08 09:30 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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BIG JIM MERRILEES Offline
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Totally disagree. It is up to musicians to express themselves in every way. Personally I do not think much of people who do not express their religious or political beliefs and I lose respect for anybody in the industry who pretends not to have a view in case they lose fans.

Historically there have been many artists who have made HUGE impact on society by expressing religious, political or social issues. I will not name names but think of all the sixties protest songs. Without them the USA would still probably have segregation and be even more right wing than at present.

#647408 - 08/30/08 09:35 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Richard Stringfellow]  
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Derek Hines Offline
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I'm not sure it's a fair quesion..

Should they not seek Government? Is that the question being asked? I think it's their option as well as anyone else's to do so... there are rich people who aren't "Celebrities" who influence politics all over the place... should they as well be barred from these activities?? Cmon people we live in the land of the free and the home of the brave.. whether in arts or entertainment how can we say who should or shouldn't participate in the Political areana... do I agree with them all..?? Heck no!!, but just because they are famous doesn't mean they should be treated like pariahs.. sheesh!
Derek

Hey also isn't sting pretty politically active? Aint gonna make me like "Fields of Gold" any less.. and how bout Clint Eastwood.. I'll still watch a fistfull of dollars anyday.. How bout Woody Guthrie... would I really want to miss out on his wonderful roots folk music because I didn't like his political views??? Heck I even like Country Joe and the Fish! lol.. Oh another band that would probably end up off my list is Creedence... they can say that America should sell it's soverignty to China (which we have in some ways) and I'll still crank up "Fortunate one" when it comes on the radio!
Derek

Last edited by Derek Hines; 08/30/08 09:46 PM.

All the worlds a song and all the people Singers

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pageartist.cfm?bandID=740346
#647409 - 08/30/08 09:42 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
Hi cozmicslop,
I agree with you. I like all of those you mentioned as well. I also like many liberal artist like the ones I mentioned. but some of their actions in the past have swayed my opinion of them to the extent that I would prefer not to contribute to their cause by buying tickets to their show or videos. I like Toby Keith and the Dixie Chick as well. Which is why I raise the question. Should they have voiced their opinion in public?? Dixie Chick will always be fantastic to me regardless of their political persuasion. But you must admit that their coming out the way they did had a major impact on their careers.

#647413 - 08/30/08 09:50 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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Derek Hines Offline
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United States Oregon
So Stephen D

You're suggesting that we should adopt a communist viewpoint? Interesting maybe we should round up all the writers and artists and musicians and such who are publicly involved in politics and have a public flambe?

Serious man..

What you are suggestion is not only wrong it's sick!

So because I sold 10 million albums last year I can't be publicly involved in politics, but you can still put signs and posters and big rig billboards on your farm declaring your opinion... This makes me sad... this is where the right to free speech should be enforced.. not so howard stern and rappers can drop the f bomb anytime they please..


All the worlds a song and all the people Singers

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pageartist.cfm?bandID=740346
#647415 - 08/30/08 09:55 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
Hi Big Jim,
On a personal level I can agree with you. There's no more sacred right than to express your personal beleifs as far as I'm concerned and simply because you have "Made it Big" does not exclude this right. I think that may be why you never hear many polital issues coming from up and comers. Weighing the business aspect verses the public image can be a powerfull set of scales.
Just for the record Jim, I was raised on sixties music. Loved it then and still do.

#647422 - 08/30/08 10:11 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
Derek,
Your misunderstanding the purpose of the post. I did not post this in support of any political viewpoint.
I had this thought after watching the debates on TV. Noticed Celibrities supporting their candidate as I'm sure you did. I had to wonder why a ?? musician, who's bottom line is making a living would possibly alienate millions of other fans to support one individual in such a public manner when most emerging artist would love to be in and probably would not threaten their chance in such a way.
This post was intended to provoke thought Derek. I've had close family who have fought and died for the same values as you seem to portray. No need to take things in that direction.
I am suggesting nothing. Instead asking from a common business standpoint!

#647428 - 08/30/08 10:34 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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Derek Hines Offline
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United States Oregon
Ok Stephen

Perhaps I got a little overzealous lol. it tends to happen with political discussion.. I just want people to be able to discuss their views and opinion even publicly and truthfully even if they are famous.. But let it be water under the bridge.. Sorry if I came off rather strongly crazy
Derek


All the worlds a song and all the people Singers

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pageartist.cfm?bandID=740346
#647431 - 08/30/08 10:57 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Derek Hines]  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
I understand Derek, I knew there would be some strong feelings and thoughts. I have never been much on politics but I seem to be paying more attention lately. You obviously feel strongly on the issues of freedom as I do. Perhaps I opened myself up for that by not posing the question in the right way. Steve

#647432 - 08/30/08 10:58 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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cozmicslop Offline
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cozmicslop  Offline
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San Antonio, TX USA
Originally Posted by Stephen D
Hi cozmicslop,
I agree with you. I like all of those you mentioned as well. I also like many liberal artist like the ones I mentioned. but some of their actions in the past have swayed my opinion of them to the extent that I would prefer not to contribute to their cause by buying tickets to their show or videos. I like Toby Keith and the Dixie Chick as well. Which is why I raise the question. Should they have voiced their opinion in public?? Dixie Chick will always be fantastic to me regardless of their political persuasion. But you must admit that their coming out the way they did had a major impact on their careers.


It's never hurt Bono or Sting. Or Stephen Stills or Neil Young. The Dixie Chicks just had a more reactionary audience, if you will.

She was obligated by her concience to make the statements she made, and just like they came after John Lennon, she paid the price. Does that mean she shouldn't have done it? I can imagine being in the band. What they went through had to have been tough.

But my mother was an activist. Sometimes I wanted her to just shut da hell up. If you've never answered a bomb threat as a 12 year old, you may not have a concept as to where I'm going with this, but hell, I'll give it a try...

Some things are too important to shut up about.

It takes a strength of will.

Some have it.


Some don't.



#647436 - 08/30/08 11:13 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: cozmicslop]  
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Stephen D Offline
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Stephen D  Offline
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WV
All true and valid points. And those you mentioned are icons we can all look up to. And yes, if we trace our history back to our founding fathers You can bet they all spoke out for a different set of ideas.

#647487 - 08/31/08 02:54 AM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen D]  
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ben willis Offline
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Famous people have a venue to express their opinions that "Joe six pack" or the average person doesn't have. A willing and eager media. I don't blame the big mouthed artist. I blame the media for the hype which equals dollars and controversy which equals more dollars for the media.
These people take a gamble when they say something that strays from their artistry and they and their team (They do have a team) should be well aware of it. When it gets picked up by the media, all bets are off. The fans or ex-fans will decide. Ben

#647514 - 08/31/08 05:36 AM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: ben willis]  
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Jim Offerman Offline
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I tend to respect artists for their art, regardless of their political views or religious beliefs. Many of the artists who's works I enjoy have views and beliefs that are not my own.

I do feel you need to be very consistent in expressing your beliefs as an artist. Probably more consistent than the rest of us. I remember the singer of a famous Dutch band saying in an interview that the band was principally opposed to allowing the use of their music in commercials... and then a few years down the road, they made a commercial for an energy company (which also featured their music). They have certainly lost some of my respect for that.


Jim Offerman ~ inspirational pop music
blog - follow me twitter - buy 'Start Here' on bandcamp!
#647528 - 08/31/08 07:29 AM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Jim Offerman]  
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Kevin Edward Rose Offline
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Kevin Edward Rose  Offline
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Richmond, IN U.S.A.
When I first joined the JPForum, one of my first replies was to this very subject, and I took a few shots for my stance. At the time, I said that I couldn't bring myself to buy a Toby Keith CD because of our seemingly opposite views, even though I enjoy much of his music.

To be honest, while I still haven't purchased one of his CD's, I have paid for a couple of downloads, those being "Never Smoke Weed with Willie Again" and "Beer for my Horses." OK, so I'm a Willie fan. cool Anyway, I took some of the posts to heart and admit that I was wrong. I realized that I have very good friends with completely opposite views on politics and religion, and that doesn't make me like them any less. Why should I hold an artist to a different standard?

I think that if an artist takes a political stance, he or she should accept that it may alienate part of his or her audience. I still admit that if I know an artist's stance opposes my own, it will probably color how I feel about the song.


Kevin Edward Rose
Celtic, Americana, whatever the folk.
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#647565 - 08/31/08 12:31 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Kevin Edward Rose]  
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BIG JIM MERRILEES Offline
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Edinburgh, Scotland. UK
It all comes down to respect and tolerance. Music is a VEHICLE used for entertainment, expression and education. IMO no subject is taboo. However that said it is up to each individual to act responsible. Whilst the public MUST show tolerance and respect for the artists the artist in turn should show the same respect. There is a time and a place for every kind of music. You would not play adult material to kindergarten audiences or anti religious music in churches.... just common sense. Pity a lot of people lack this common sense and seem to go out of the way to provoke bad feelings.

There are a number of people who produce music I really like but their political/religious views are totally opposed to mine. On the flip side there are a number of people whose views are very similar to mine but who produce music that IMO sucks. In a free world we have the right to listen to or ignore any music...as long as we do not disturb the neighbours. LOL

#647656 - 08/31/08 05:49 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: BIG JIM MERRILEES]  
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Mark Kaufman Offline
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Minneapolis
Actors and musicians all have beliefs...but not liking their work because of their political views says more about the viewer than the viewed.

The movie, the song...that's fantasy. The viewpoints of those people and their actions in the world, that's reality. The celebrities who proclaim their views even if it might alienate some fans are placing more importance on impacting the real world than on maximizing their personal income, and I respect that, no matter what their political views may be.

#647690 - 08/31/08 08:03 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Mark Kaufman]  
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Stephen John (singch Offline
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Stephen John (singch  Offline
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Trinidad & Tobago
Here's a truthful statement "Well said in not well done". I agree that we all have view point and should be able to express them, no matter who we are. But, many of "us" tend to say things only and mainly to please and appease those around us. If that is the case then shut up! because after all is said you have to go and do. If you don't have the "Balls" or "Backbone" to stand by what you know is right then zip it.

I've seen many actors and musicians fumble and stutter when dealing with issues such as racism, homosexuality, rape, abortion etc and many of then just say what they think is safe enough to keep their fans to me that's RUBBISH!

#647899 - 09/01/08 05:45 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Stephen John (singch]  
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Herbie Gaines Offline
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Herbie Gaines  Offline
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I prefer them to be separate...If I am out relaxing, I can take a little politics, but don't bash me with it


Herbie
JPF Chicago Chapter Coordinator
http://www.herbietunes.com

#647911 - 09/01/08 06:50 PM Re: Politics and the Arts [Re: Herbie Gaines]  
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Rick Heenan Offline
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Lockport NY, usa
Politics and the Arts. One lends itself to interpretation quite well, the other, seems to be more biased and opinionated. I'm with Herbie's outlook. I can take a little bit of all the foibles that the vocal minority accuse me of. Even if untrue. No matter what, ultimately, I vote my own heart and conscience everytime.

Last edited by Rick Heenan; 09/01/08 06:52 PM.

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