This February, on the televisions of millions of Americans, the gravelly voice of an aging icon spoke those very famous words, “It’s halftime.” He wasn’t talking about the teams or even the sport itself. It was halftime in America, and Clint Eastwood’s Chrysler Super Bowl advertisement was met with great praise, with some even assuming Dirty Harry himself had tipped his hat in favor of President Barack Obama.
With the second half winding down and the score nearly tied, fiscally conservative and social moderate Eastwood put his foot down on who he actually stood for, and when the left discovered it wasn’t their candidate, the blogosphere and the media went absolutely livid.
He was a highly respected old man they had revered when it was believed he was speaking in favor of the president, despite Eastwood’s insistence that the ad had no political basis.
Now, as soon as he put himself behind Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, every knucklehead with an internet connection was lighting up Twitter while paying as little attention as possible to the content of the speech itself. Hollywood had turned on one of the greatest living veterans of their industry, simply because he did one thing: speak without guidance, without notes and without an agenda.
On the final night of the Republican National Convention, the actor in Eastwood was silent as the man came out and spoke directly from his heart, a practice undoubtedly unfamiliar with those Hollywood stars. Eastwood spoke the truth as he saw it, and for his trouble, an old man gets laid into by the entertainment industry.
Eastwood’s speech was, to be sure, highly unorthodox. His speech was a rant, a ramble, an unorganized pep talk, something Grandpa would do once he sat you on his lap. From his humorous back-and-forth with Invisi-Bama to his various off-key remarks about this and that, there was still a message at the least behind the most unique speech to ever be said in any of the national conventions.
His message was the same, simple question that should be the basis for all elections: Are you better off now than you were four years ago? Did the person currently in office do a good enough job to merit being rewarded another four years of being in charge of the strongest country on Earth? Given that he spoke at the Republican National Convention, the answer is quite clear: Obama out, Romney in. According to Eastwood’s speech, the content of which no one has really bothered to address without succumbing to childish mockery, Obama has failed. With a Democratic supermajority possessing filibuster-proof authority, he failed.
Regarding the closure of Guantanamo Bay, he failed. Concerning foreign policy and the financial crisis, Obama has failed.
This was the message, clear-cut and simple, but it was overlooked, whether out of spiteful ignorance or just plain ordinary ignorance, because apparently it’s more fun to kick at an octogenarian once it’s clear he’s no longer playing on the same team as you.
I, for one, am glad he’s not. At least people like Eastwood aren’t making off-key remarks on Twitter about how they wished Hurricane Isaac would have hit Tampa, just to spite the Republican National Convention. Oh, and to endanger the lives of thousands of people, but as long as the RNC gets rained on, who cares, right?
Right. Apparently the media forgot to cover Samuel L. Jackson’s teeny tiff. Jackson, another Hollywood tough guy, posted a tasteless tweet last Monday, stating that it was “unfair” the GOP was spared by Hurricane Issac and that he didn’t understand “God’s plan.” But of course, Jackson’s expletive filled tweet was spared the vitrol and ire of the media, who also conveniently ignored the actor’s clear desire to see some drowned Republicans.
Yet Jackson’s comment goes silent and the controversy is buried by the lethargic bias of the media. Rush Limbaugh and Glen Beck are repeatedly jumped on for their insane blurbs and general nonsense, and for very good reason, but oh, if Nick Fury decides to blow up Twitter, saying that Tampa should have been hit over New Orleans, then it’s no problem.
Eastwood proposes a solution to our country’s woes, replacing one ineffective leader for someone who just might be our ticket out of the hole that’s been dug, while Jackson wants Tampa to be buried at sea, so long as the Republicans get buried with them.
James Wang is a history sophomore and may be reached at email@example.com.