Denzel Washington is still promoting his now Oscar-nominated role in Roman J. Israel, which is how he got the cover of the UK’s Sunday Times Magazine. I generally enjoy British people interviewing American actors, because there’s often an anthropological vibe to it, like the Brits are studying the Americans for clues about their politics, thoughts on racism, and more. This is particularly true of this interview with Denzel, arguably one of the most famous and beloved African-American celebrities in the world. Denzel has been around for a while though, and he’s able to walk that weird apolitical line. You can read the full piece here. Some highlights:
He wished he had kept a piece of his Roman J. Israel afro: “Maybe it’s a black-community thing. When my first son was born, we cut the pieces of hair from his first year and you keep it. I guess it’s like keeping baby teeth.”
On the Dallas Cowboys kneeling, and the owner’s threat to kick them off the team: He shrugs. “You gotta pay the cost to be the boss. You can take a knee — but don’t complain if you go home, you know? It’s a free country. You have the right to protest. Are they being benched? I don’t think so. You can’t bench a whole team.”
On the #MeToo conversations changing Hollywood: “I’m sure it already has. I’m sure there are those who thought they could get away with anything and they don’t feel that now. I mean, I hope they don’t. I think it will change the industry for good. Hmm, Harvey. It’s about 10 years. I haven’t talked to Harvey in about 10 years.”
He gave up alcohol on his 60th birthday: “I just had enough. Some things you can have enough of. Not peanut butter yet, but all alcohol. I gave it up with the idea of putting my best foot forward. I tried everything else, let’s try this.”
Whether he cares about awards: “Of course people care about them. First of all, it’s an opportunity for the industry to celebrate those who have achieved. I don’t know if it’s a measuring stick … I remember they all used to go to Swifty Lazar’s party at Spago’s after the awards. There used to be a parking lot and you could look down over Spago’s, and I remember seeing people going in — Warren Beatty and people like that — and I said to myself, someday I’m going to get in there. It wasn’t so much about getting the award, it was, like, I wasn’t invited to the party and I needed to be.”
Whether America will ever “recover” from going from Obama to Trump. “What do you mean, ‘recover’?” Obama was a good guy in charge. A good president and a good man, and now we have the opposite. “Well, it’s early days yet …” Really? “It’s not like Barack and I are old pals, you know. I think he watched someone and was inspired by someone and someone will be inspired by him,” he says obtusely. Does he think the current regime is inspiring? “Is it not?” he replies. He seems determined to remain ambiguous on politics, and although he’s sitting in front of me, in his head he’s already left the room. But after we meet, I notice he looked mesmerised while watching Oprah Winfrey at the Golden Globes.
His final thought on Trump: “There’s a pastor who talked about this. I think his name is AR Bernard and it’s Daniel, chapter 10. He says that God puts kings in a place for a season and reason, and we don’t always know the reason, so this is what it is right now. There’s a reason behind it and I say to people that, if nothing else, we should be more unified. All the more reason to work together.”
Denzel is basically saying what so many people said, trying to find some kind of silver lining in the sh-thole that is American politics today, which is that “well, at least people are organizing and focused now.” That’s not a silver lining, peeps. But mostly I think Denzel is just trying to sell his movie and not piss people off by talking about his views on politics and race. Which is his right, absolutely. But at some point, do you judge apolitical people for staying silent publicly when we’re in the midst of all of this fascism and racist terrorism?
Photos courtesy of Getty, cover courtesy of The Sunday Times Magazine.
He may come across as apolitical but he did say Obama was a good man,a good President and a good guy in charge and mow we have the opposite. That’s enough right there to piss off Trump supporters. If he’s that concern about selling his movie he wouldn’t have even said that much.
No, the comments about Obama came from the interviewer. Look closely at the use of quotation marks.
I think that was the reporter who said that to try to get him to make a fuller comment. At least that’s how I read it.
Okay, got it, you’re right it is the reporter.
Is he apolitical or is he choosing to not talk about his politics to a magazine? There’s a difference between being apolitical and not wanting to give sound bites off. Do we know that he’s not having these kinds of discussions at home with his family and friends? Do we know if he voted or not? What’s interesting to me is that we get all up in arms when someone doesn’t want to say anything vocally to the public and yet get up in arms when those who do say things publicly but aren’t perfect. Just look at the #metoo movement and how we tell certain women to stop talking and stop being part of the movement because of their past. But I bet you if those same women didn’t say anything at all, they’d be called out for their silence too. And before someone tells me no that’s not the case…I see it all the time with politics which is why I have zero problem with a celeb not wanting to get political in an interview.
Totally agree. I don’t think he owes anyone an answer regarding his political beliefs. He is an actor and maybe he wants that part of his life to be private. And… what if he is conservative?
This is interesting: why are you giving Denzel a pass on not proffering his political slant, and yet most people on here slam Taylor Swift for not saying who she voted for. And let me say, I am NOT a fan of hers (I am well out of her target audience lol), but I am wondering about the double standard.
(And yes, I know and FIRMLY agree that she needed to shut down that “Aryan Princess” crap that Drump’s base spews, but I don’t agree that she needs to say whom she voted for. JMO…
I feel the same way about Taylor Swift. I don’t think she needs to say anything about her political beliefs or opinions. She doesn’t owe anyone anything. The job she signed up for is singing and entertaining. I am not a fan, but she does her job well. As far as the “aryan princess” stuff, I don’t think she needs to say anything about that either. She is not affiliated with those people in any way and she isn’t responsible for what they say. She (for whatever reason) has decided to stay completely silent on political/controversial topics and in my opinion has every right to do that.
It’s not a double standard because I feel the same way about Taylor Swift and I’m actually one of the few who has defended her choice to not speak about politics.
Exactly. I would prefer a lot of celebrities stay out of politics and we go back to caring more about the opinions of people with an education/experience. By the way Denzel goes about living – supporting black causes, sending his children to black schools, the roles he takes, etc – its pretty clear where he stands on certain social issues.
Also lets stop looking to celebs as more than entertainment/some sort of hope in this dreary world other than escapism
How is that fair? They have more life experience than the average voter, and they are citizens. That narrative was pushed by the right because of the power of celebrities and the reach of their usually left-leaning voices.
As if politicians or the average 45 voter is a brain trust with any facts or super knowledge when obviously they aren’t.
They don’t have to speak about politics but they as much right as anyone else. They aren’t trained poodles or seals.
Ronald Reagan was an actor and then a politician. I think he was a horrible racist president but the right speaks of him in reverential hushed tones. In fact, more right politicians have been celebrities. Another example of their hypocrisy.
I completely disagree. I don’t think celebrities have more “life experience”. What does that even mean? Everyone that is alive has “life experience” and it is all valuable and meaningful. While celebrities do have the right to speak out about politics… I can completely understand why someone would say they aren’t interested in a celebrity’s opinion. When I go to the doctor or the dentist… I don’t want to hear his/her opinion on politics. When I go to the grocery store… I don’t want to hear the butcher or cashier’s opinion. I don’t want to hear it from my postal carrier or my mechanic either. I grew up in a household where I was told it was rude to ask someone who she voted for… for some it is personal and the opinion of others doesn’t matter… just like religion, money, sex, etc. So I agree… I also find it completely annoying when a celebrity is asked about politics.
@mongoliarose Youre misinterpreting what I’m saying. In no way am I saying one person doesn’t have the right to talk openly about politics. What I’m saying is we need to stop looking to celebs as some important voice (especially) over others that know what theyre talking about/are educated on certain policy issues.
Being a great entertainer does not mean they know wtf theyre talking about outside of that. There are exceptions like Angelina Jolie who has dedicated over a decade of her life to certain causes, surrounds herself with experienced people, etc. Would I really care about Tilda Swinton thinks about this topic? Not at all – but I’d love to see her new movie.
*also wrote the wrong username – whoops – I’m kdlaf
Ahh, I see, kdlaf,
Thank you for clarifying.
It is hard to understand someone else’s tone or meaning on here sometimes. lol
I believe you are saying that their opinion isn’t more informed or more than anyone else’s and shouldn’t be looked to as authorities on subjects.
That I do agree with. I think the public should educate themselves and not follow anyone else as anything other than a starting point of interest. Incuriousity is a serious problem in this country.
Sorry, I misunderstood you.
I don’t discuss politics in general with people I don’t know, and I agree about dentists and so forth but they aren’t public figures with a broad audience. You rarely will speak to them one on one. My point is they have the right or not to speak just like the average citizen. Unlike the average citizen, they have usually traveled more, come in contact with more people, have more money and can educate themselves if they choose. They may be stupid or smart, but their lives are unusual therefore the idea they aren’t supposed to say anything is something I disagree with. It is a personal choice.
Yes! Particularly when he was /still is campaigning for an Oscar.
I do not understand the insistence that celebrities discuss politics.
I’m good with people keeping their politics private, no one is obligated to share that, but I think he’d have been better served by just saying “I don’t discuss politics publicly” rather than whatever waffling back and forth he was doing there.
This times 1000
My brother thinks we shouldn’t be “divisive” about politics. I agree- in fantasy island- but in the real world, this administration is fascist, Kleptocratic, and seditious. So we “shouldn’t” get angry at people who are either silent or complicit? Help me to understand?
I do not think that he is apolitical, not in the least. I mean, he lives in Hollywood and he and his wife reportedly put their kids in all-Black schools. I think that he just doesn’t want to get into it on a public platform with media that could potentially misconstrue his words. Beneath his attempts at milquetoast obliqueness he is indicating that Trump is problematic.
I also think he has some criticism about the Obama administration and Hillary. But any nuance to his comments will be completely lost in this climate so he remains vague.
There is nothing more political than wealthy people educating their children in all-Black educational institutions because one of the foundational tenets of white supremacy is white intellectual superiority. This is why Trump refused to believe Obama went to Columbia and Harvard and why he demanded to see his transcripts. Republicans called Obama dumb and said without a teleprompter he would be lost. Trump and other Republicans refused to believe Obama could have written his book. And yet, these same people call Trump brilliant. Denzel’s choice in this matter is very telling.
I love him and I don’t mind what he said. If he wants to be diplomatic then that’s his prerogative.
It’s people who say one thing and does another thing that makes me angry. And also people like Susan S and Trump are worst of mankind.
When Denzel speaks, it usually sounds to me like he’s speaking in riddles. Or like he’s in a Shakespeare play. I like it, it’s interesting, but it’s hard to grasp what he’s saying sometimes. Like in this interview he sort of supports the players taking a knee, but also doesn’t (e.g. “Don’t complain”). I think like the interviewer says, he’s being purposely obtuse.
In my culture when you ask a question of an Elder you never get a direct answer. It used to be frustrating but when you walk away and digest it, the answer is in the story they told. Denzel reminds me of that. The answers people give in interviews are always sliced and diced, I would be interested in the entire interview, unfiltered.
I think he is just very thoughtful and can see many sides of various issues. I love him.
I don’t think celebrities owe us anything, personally. I hate that so many famous people think that because they make movies, we care to hear their opinion on __________ political thing. There is an old Chappelle (I know… I know..) stand up bit about a radio station talking to Ja Rule about 9/11 that kind of explains my feelings on politics and celebrities. I don’t give a shhh about what Ja thinks at a time like this.
I don’t know much about Denzel, but if his standard is to generally keep his politics to himself I’m not going to fault him for that. It’s actually a breath of fresh air in a sea of people constantly shouting, “I’M FAMOUS, LISTEN TO WHAT I HAVE TO SAY!”.
“Somebody find Ja Rule so we can make sense of all this!”
I remember that!
I don’t see anything wrong with being optimistic and positive. Especially considering he’s right- we can’t go back in time and have 45 unelected do our options are to cry and scream, or to buckle down together and try to make the best of it. On a micro level, 45 did something positive for some friends of mine in my immigrant community- several of them who were legal residents are now applying for citizenship so they can vote in 2020.
Small good things are happening. There will be an “other side”’of this hot garbage mess and I hope we come to it together, prepared, with a plan.
There is a lot of movement in positive directions on micro levels that weren’t happening before. My husband and I made a decision that is huge for us but won’t change the world. It will change some lives, but we would have never thought to do it before.
I know a lot of people doing this. My sibling is adopting two children of color that just need a chance AND their older brother who is a teenager. He is a talented boy in a home with a drug-addicted mother who loves them enough to know she can’t care for them. My brother, not one prone to sentimentality met the boy and just couldn’t stop thinking about him. The mother met my brother’s wife through an organization and for some reason, she took an extra interest in their plight.
The kids are attached to each other and have already been hurt in the foster care system, so they just said Eff it Why not? The other two are tiny and just fit right in immediately.
A year or two ago they would not have done it. But with 45 and the GOP determined to strip away programs these kids have zero chance. My brother also said by seeing how much 45 and his family have but do nothing charitable or meaningful; he realized he could do more too and took this out of character leap.
These kids will live a life of privilege and love. My sister in law is warm and intelligent with a big heart and a fantastic mother. Her career involves children, so it just seemed to be met to happen. Unlike how it is on television the oldest child has no interest in returning to his mother and isn’t broken beyond repair.
So much has been exposed because of 45 that I think needed to be and I know I have done soul searching of my own with positive results and more enlightenment. Especially about racism and I think I am not alone.
There is change happening, but it is grassroots and very local.
He is like a societal mirror, and he reflects the ugliest of human nature and denial.
Black people are not responsible for getting rid of white supremacy in the US. White people are. White people created the mess and it is THEIR job to clean it up. I am past sick and tired of victims of white supremacy being told that we have to help clean up the mess that we did not create. You would not ask any other victims of any other crimes to help clean up, why are we required to help clean up this one?
If Denzel does not want to rant and rave about Dump, he should not be forced to do so. There are more than enough black people who do it on a daily basis. Find one, follow, and learn from them.
His last comment reminds me of the last few minutes of Dave Chappelle’s most recent Netflix special where he talks about Dump and Emmett Till. Dump had to happen in order for a lot of people to get up off their asses and help make this country better. Shame that it could not happen when Obama was president but it is happening.
That’s all well and good and you’re not wrong. But it’s also not how social change EVER happens. It never occurrs without the disadvantaged group fighting for their rights. As if people in privileged positions ever just go “It’s a nice day, let’s change things.” For example, I agree that we talk a bit too much about what we as women can do to change sexism, misogyny etc. when it’s really the men who need to change. But as IF they will do that without us standing up for ourselves.
Having said that, I have NO problem with his answers. He’s a great actor, he’s been in the business for decades, and he should have an even bigger career. But when Sony thinks he’s not that bankable, we all know that his standing with studios etc. might not be as secure as we think. Is there ANY black actor/actress who can just do whatever the hell they want and still get hired? I don’t see it. I don’t think anything would happen to him if he dumped on Trump but you never know and if this is what he wants to say, I’m 100% fine with it.
@LittleMissNaughty: what is the story re: him not being bankable? Was that something in the Sony hack that I missed? That’s really surprising to me that anyone would think that! Isn’t Denzel pretty much universally adored?
Yes, it was in the Sony emails.
That was one of the more skilled “I’m going to say something but not really” dances I’ve ever observed. Impressive. There’s a reason he is where he is.
“Barack”? That’s so freakin’ thirsty. “See how close I am to the former prez? I call him by his first name!” Such a Will Smith move. Lame.
I call him Barack sometimes. That’s his name, right?
Traditionally (I know, that word sounds so old-timey), even close friends of sitting or ex-presidents did him the courtesy of referring to him as “President X” in public. Case in point: Bobby Kennedy, as AG, always referred to his brother publicly as “the President” or “Mr. President”, and not just “Jack”. The equivalent would be referring to the Queen as “Liz”, just to show how tight you two are. It’s not the biggest faux pas in the world, but certainly tacky AF.
But that’s different. The Queen is still the Queen, Obama is no longer the president. He’s a civilian . I call Clinton, Bill. It doesn’t mean I’m trying to act like I know him personally.
And this is sort of a moot point since Denzel clearly said “it’s not like Barack and I are old pals.” Therefore he is not trying to pretend like they are close.
Think you might be reading into it a bit much ha. When Michael Jackson died, my dad called me and asked if I’d “heard about Mike”. I think it’s just a thing people do with public figures.
That is reaching.
Denzel probably has met him. I mean he IS Denzel Washington one of the biggest stars in the world. If he is friends with him why would that be a shock?
Lots of people call him Barack but with affection, not disrespect.
Refreshing that he is remaining more neutral and being positive.
I wasn’t a fan of Obama but I sat quietly and hoped for the best for 8 years because he was my president. Now I am enjoying the great economy and hoping for the best because Trump is my president.
You can make yourself sick getting upset about politics or enjoy your life. I prefer to enjoy my life.
You know the “great economy” is thanks to Obama?
Stop watching the Fox Entertainment Channel.
You are enjoying the great economy that Obama and his administration built. Dump is just trying to take credit for it.
Well, enjoy your good economy (which Obama started), while so many Americans and people around the world are worried about what’s happening with everything else. Something that’s making so many of us sick, is watching every day as Trump flushes our country down the toilet. He’s making me so sick, and I’m glad I still have health insurance for a little while longer to take care of it. I don’t know how much you’ll enjoy it when the button is pressed, innocent dreamers are thrown out of the country, you realize that the tax cut really isn’t for you, health insurance is taken, and that ridiculous wall costs our country, not Mexico, billions of dollars that should have been used for things our country and the citizens truly needs. Nothing ‘refreshing ‘ about any of that.
It blows my mind how Trumpsters and people who choose to ignore what’s really happening refuse to wake up and see the truth.
That’s great that you can look the other way while others worry about being separated from family and the only country they have ever known, while others wonder how they are going to pay for their healthcare, I could go on but I’d hate to put a damper on your enjoyment.
You are a breath of fresh air — right along with Denzel.
Ah yes so “refreshing” to not GAF about anyone but yourself.
You people understand that the market is on course to collapse, right? So enjoy staring at your fat 401(k)s for another year (if you’re lucky) because when that’s gone, you truly won’t have shit because this administration will have taken every last thing away.
The delusion is real…
“Ah yes so “refreshing” to not GAF about anyone but yourself.”
Wow!! That was harsh & presumptuous of you. Of course there will be a market ‘correction’, there always is…
How is it presumptuous when some of you are sitting here watching good American citizens get their rights ripped away from them and all you can think of is “YAY my wallet”?
Don’t act all offended because I call selfish behavior out for what it is. If you support this administration, you support the oppression of marginalized people. That’s a decision you have the right to make but you need to own that instead of pretending to care. You prioritize the stock market (NOT the economy BTW) over basic human rights. Selfish as hell.
Everything kitten said. +100000000
@kitten – that’s exactly why Trump was elected. He fanned the fire of self-absorption and indulgence. His base desires improved conditions (based on false promises and effective soundbites) for themselves regardless of who was impacted and in what ways.
You must be white, wealthy, straight and Christian, and ready to reap the benefits of that big fat tax cut. And not worried about reproductive rights, relatives getting deported, losing social security and/or Medicare. Or having a relative, like my husband, who is a journalist and feels targeted. I can think of no other reason why anyone could “enjoy” ANYTHING about these miserable times.
You guys please quit reporting this comment. There are so many responses now we’re just leaving it. If you want to report a comment, do so before responding to it.
Oh cmon guys. I’m NOT conservative in the least. Pretty liberal is most everything. I’m a minority in many ways and I’m affected, as well as my community, by this administration, but that comment does not need to be reported! Just because you don’t agree with it. You can respond to it, you can ignore it, but don’t try to make it go away bc you don’t agree with it. What if that was done to your comments?
I think it ridiculous that anybody reported this comment, while i dont agree with the poster everyone is entitled to their opinion. If you disagree use your intellect to counter their words
I don’t like censorship because someone doesn’t like a comment. It shouldn’t be an echo chamber. It is tedious that way, and good conversations are rooted in disagreement.
They didn’t break the rules. Ignorance isn’t against the guidelines of the site. It is exasperating but not worth censoring.
I’m glad to hear that you’ve found peace and pride in your decision to bend over for white supremacy, @whataboutme. You and Sparrow are both going to need protection though.
Unfortunately a lot of moves are being made by this administration that are going to be very bad for the economy sooner or later. And the environment, and civil rights, and the education system, and foreign policy, etc, etc, etc.
I hope you realize that you are speaking from a place of privilege if you are able to ignore it and enjoy your life. Many people cannot. If you choose to ignore it, you are ignore them as well.
Your last paragraph is spot on. Completely agree,
Well it must be nice to be able to sit there and not worry about all the despicable things that are happening on a daily basis in our country. Personally, I’m worried all the time. A co-worker and friend of mine is a Dreamer and I live in fear for her. The sociopath in chief and his disgusting bunch of cronies are determined to destroy this country in every way imaginable. When the economy crashes – and it will – I hope you enjoy the aftermath of what we’re left with after this Orange maniac leaves office (hopefully in handcuffs).
I’m glad you’re able to find some enjoyment for yourself while the lives of countless other American citizens are being torn to shreds.
That being said, I don’t think your comment should be reported because you have a right to voice your opinion here just as the rest of us do. But I hope you understand that your statement will have ramifications from other posters here, and your position says a lot about your character. And what it says is that you’re likely quite privileged and selfish.
What part of the administration would be worse? HE hasn’t done anything good or much at all. The economy is great because of Obama, but there are already signs it will start to slow, but it is not being reported yet. Give it 3 or 4 months.
Just like the phony tax cut that companies pretend to pass down, but they aren’t. They are keeping the profits, closing down locations and playing smoke and mirrors PR games.
So I guess you don’t care about the 1000s of people in Puerto Rico who have died due to criminal neglect by the 45 racists in the White House. Don’t you care that the world thinks we are a joke and have lost our global standing?
Leave your Fox bubble; they aren’t even considered news anymore. They are propaganda and lies and a global punchline.
You won’t hear me or believe me unless you stop drinking the kool-aid and expand your world.
But you won’t.
You will even believe whatever they tell you when they send innocent law abiding citizens back to dangerous countries. Even veterans.
45 is not my president. He is yours, and you own him.
Denzel has a wise approach here. A lot of people are becoming so blinded by their negative feelings about Trump….they aren’t seeing how it’s affecting them or those around them. Or any sort of bigger picture….
As a Democrat, I’m fearful our party is beginning to advocate for the same type of things we dislike in the GOP. One “right” messaging, one “right” type of inclusion, one “right” stance on social issues. It’s becoming a bit of offense culture and hysteria, attacking any and all who don’t act or speak in that “right” way and demanding public apologies and huge repercussions because of it.
It’s getting over the top and quietly pushing a lot of people away…
Please. If you think the negative feelings about Trump are unwarranted, I think you’re the one who’s a bit blinded.
@esmom Where did I say the negative feelings were unwarranted? Again…a lot of people are so blinded by Trump hate…. they are just attacking and finding offense with anything at this point. It’s odd ….and not in alignment with democratic approaches or beliefs.
Imo, have you stopped to think that no one is attacking him? JFC. Have you heard a word that’s come out of his mouth or via his tweets? He doesn’t need any help at all to look bad, he’s done this all on his own. With some help from his complicit cabinet and administration.
If Trump had anything reasonable, rational, insightful or truthful to say I think many people would be happy to give him credit After fainting from shock, of course). Attacking for no reason is the specialty of the right.
I don’t know how anyone can’t have negative feelings towards Trump.
I am definitely someone that is seething angry about *something* Trump or his enablers in Congress do pretty much everyday. And I believe strongly that the things that are making me angry SHOULD make me angry. If we start getting worn down by this nonstop disgrace of an administration and letting things slide? That’s wrong. That’s how democracy dies. BUT having said that, I am personally going to try to keep my emotions in check. I don’t think it’s affecting my judgment regarding this crap administration or the GOP in general but it’s probably negatively affected people around me.
@IMO: I don’t really understand what point you’re trying to make here (truly, no snark). You admit that our feelings of anger/outrage/etc. are not unwarranted, but you also think we shouldn’t voice those opinions?
Trust me, I would LOVE to have one day — just one damn day — during which my blood pressure doesn’t spike because of something heinous that this awful man says or does. But there literally has not been a day like that since he took office. Or even since the campaign, really.
The point I’m trying to make is exactly that… You’re blood pressure is spiking? You’re reading my comment closely to see if I may in any way be supporting Trump or saying something the “wrong” way? We have created an “offense culture” on the Democratic side where now even amongst ourselves there is ONE acceptable reaction to Trump = outrage. ONE acceptable reaction to sexual misconduct = outrage and if you fall out of those lines opinion wise, then the outrage turns on you. It reminds me of the boorish holding on of ideals of the GOP….just different ideals….but everyone thinks their right.
Long story short. ..if you’ve had months of high blood pressure… how does that affect your family, your behavior online? But in a personal way? I know people who are so mad they can’t even carry enjoyable conversations without bringing up Trump …
Imo, Stop. Stop trying to act as though people are reacting irrationally to Trump. HE is the irrational, ignorant, petty, spiteful one, throwing our country into the s^itter one day at a time.
Imo: I agree w you 100%. You’re completely right. But on this “tolerant” site, you can expect to be bashed for voicing an unpopular opinion—just as you said.
He does. I just wish He woukd let us in on what that reason was sometimes.
This Orange Idiot is in place to shove racism, discrimation, misogyny and abuse of power in our collective face so we can crawl out from under it.
I don’t have a problem with most of what he said, but I’m not a believer, so it gets annoying when people answer questions using ‘God.’ He didn’t give his final thought on Trump, he just repeated something that a pastor said
I don’t mind people referring to God, but Rump is not a king and God didn’t place him on a throne. Millions of idiots put that shit-sack in the White House. But I guess the pastor’s quote gets the point across more diplomatically.
I don’t blame him for not getting into the weeds about this. His goal in this interview is to talk about his OSCAR NOMINATED role, and really, campaign for the votes. I know when I’m trying to talk to someone in my line of work and they keep bringing up things (like Trump for example) that I know are going to distract from my goal and ultimately take us down a rabbit hole I get really frustrated. My opinions on Trump (while all CBers know how i feel, lol) are really not germane to my job and I feel like people sometimes bait me to get a fight started and grrrrr….
Sorry what a tangent. My point was, Denzel handled that well.
Then just say “I never talk politics” instead of that pretentious doubletalk.
Thank you. Being “obtuse” is not a good look for anyone of his intelligence and age, regardless of celebrity status.
I don’t judge people who are apolitical because they simply are not interested. I do however jidge those who are apolitical in order to gain something from the silence. Which is Denzel? I am not sure, but I felt an urge to say something unpleasant here.
I don’t believe Denzel is pro gay marriage or pro choice because of his religious beliefs.. I think he stays out of it for a reason. Not all of his stances on issues line up with liberals in Hollywood, and he doesn’t want to get into it.
From an interview when Obama was in office:
Speaking of politics, Washington defines himself as an independent.
“In some ways I’m liberal, and other ways I’m conservative,” he says. “We get so locked in on ‘you have to be this or that.’ It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. I’m not a liberal or a conservative completely. Who is? Or why do you have to be? You assess the pros, the cons, of both sides and you make an intelligent decision.”
When asked how he feels about Obama’s endorsement of same-sex marriage, Washington avoids taking a stance.
How did you feel about Obama endorsing same-sex marriage?
What did he say about it?
He said he was in favor of it. That he didn’t oppose it.
What does that mean? [laughs]
It’s the political way of saying, “I support it.”
You know, I think people have the right to believe what they want to believe. And people have the right to disagree with it.
I think you hit it on the head @Jayna. He’s very socially conservative and probably supports criminalizing abortion and this phony ass “defense of religious liberty” crap. It’s the Faustian bargain alot of social conservatives have made with Trump.
I kind of agree with him. He is allowed to have his beliefs. He is not getting in the way of anyone. just wants go to work and make movies. He’s probably like many people in his age group that do not agree with gay marriage but do not want to deny anyone that right and its probably the same with abortion. He probably doesn’t agree with it, but again does not want to deny anyone that right.
@Jayna: sigh. I wish I didn’t know that about him. ITA that obviously he’s entitled to his opinion and we’re entitled to disagree, but I’ve loved him for so long and somehow missed the fact that he seems to have some conservative leanings.
Hopefully he is not a full-on Trump supporter, but as others here have said, he’s promoting his movie and doesn’t want to alienate anyone, even deplorables.
I don’t think he’s a Trump- Supporter or trying to pander to them, based on the other things he’s said. It seems like he’s just trying to avoid saying anything controversial about politics.
But that comment on marriage equality is…concerning. Either he’s trying carefully to tip-toe around someone in his life (it may be more than one person) who is hompophobic, or, worse case scenario, he may have some homophobic beliefs himself.
Here’s the thing I’ve always disliked about pastors who speak about politics. They speak of it as a process where God puts someone in place to rule like a king where that couldn’t be more wrong and incorrect. In a democracy, the people vote for the president and the president works for the people-end of story. The fictional narrative pastors have created allow people to disengage from the political process (and control people & issues), and let things that should be dealt with or stopped continue because ‘oh well’ God put that person there and it’s not my responsibility. No he didn’t-you did and it’s your civic duty to think about what’s going on, vote and fix it.
Great observations and I completely agree with you.
I’ll add that they also like to frame it as your faith being tested, as a phase during which you have to be strong. No. Your fellow citizens f*cked you and you let it happen because God. I’m over it.
Those words in Daniel were meant to comfort/inspire people living under oppressive imperial regimes. We don’t live an absolute monarchy, we live in a democracy so as nice as the sentiment may be, it no longer has any bearing on our lives, which is why religion and politics don’t mix. I’m with littlemiss, I’m tired of people using God as an excuse to disengage from our political process.
he looks so handsome in that header picture. beautiful styling.
As far as favorite actors, Denzel, for me, has always been in a very small, select group of actors I adore and see almost everything of theirs.
Its statements like this that feed the Dotards continuing belief and assertion that he is the God King Emperor of the USA – a view that is being lapped up and promoted by his sheeple. Trump is setting himself up to be above the constitution and law, the GOP are allowing it to happen. I often open the news websites to read that Trump has finally declared himself Emperor of Gilead – scary stuff that could happen.
For a LOT of folks like Denzel…their skin the charities they support and where they’re at in life is the BIGGEST political statement they will EVER need to make, anything else would be redundant and reductive for them…that’s how I was raised…that’s how my elders are….heck, that’s how I am….
I hate when people are all like “We just have to trust that this is god’s will and it will work out to god’s intention.” People sit around and do nothing about despotism because they think some divine being preordained it.
That magazine cover photo is everything I needed to start my day. He’s such a beautiful man. My crush for him dulled after seeing Fences and how he looked (he wasn’t “Training Day” Denzel) but this cover shows he’s still got it.
I don’t care to know Denzel’s politics. He’s not hurting anyone (I hope) and I’m sure he’s helping (I hope). Every POC gets a pass from me for not talking politics because they live the consequences of inaction everyday.
As it relates to politics…..He doesn’t owe any one an answer to any question. Not providing a substantive answer doesn’t mean he’s apolitical, it just means he doesn’t choose to answer to the questioner on the topic. HE DOESNT HAVE TO,
I want to be entertained by entertainers and their politics are largely immaterial to me unless they choose to run for office,
If you need to judge a non politician for taking the 5th on politics, then i judge you as a (insert an insult here).
I can respect him for not wanting to bring up politics or anything controversial. It seems that anything you say these days one way or the other people will damn you for it. I have a little over 600 friends on Facebook and I avoid sensitive topics because I don’t wanna offend anyone so having a mainstream Fanbase with millions of people around the world I can’t even imagine how it must feel to avoid topics to prevent backlash. You can’t shame a person for staying silent. They have their reasons to be. I admire the brave people who can shout their beliefs or insights from roof tops, but not all of us are wired that way. Some people are born leaders and some are followers. People like me choose carefully who I follow, but I’m no leader when it comes to activism.
I can tell you people up here that do like to share your beliefs just be kind, just be humble, and just remember that someone out there is listening to what you say and takes it all in and it might just change their life
Hopefully, the reason DT was elected was to destroy the GOP.
And he’s not doing good for the economy, folks. Stocks are riding for a 1929 style collapse. And the solar industry is going to have to lay off thousands due to that tariff increase. Even the companies giving the bonuses that DT is bragging about are hiding serious layoffs and closures. Farming is starting to tank. My parents are in almonds and due to no TPP, their crop is worth much less than last year, even though it’s a better crop. Pulling out of NAFTA like he wants will be a long term disaster for agriculture.
Don’t focus on the brushstrokes and look and the big picture and you’ll see DT is starting the makings of another recession, or, worse case, depression, in our economy.
What a breath of fresh air compared to other Hollywood actors who believe the world needs their opinions on everything. He just lets his presence, charisma and talent speak for himself, because he is an actor, not a political analyst.
This past year has totally changed my feelings for Trump supporters…sure, at first you could write them off to just being anti-government, anti-politicians, or simply hating Hillary. But now, after a year of scandal, investigations and horrific tweets, I cannot stomach anyone who supports this illiterate, bitter simpleton occupying the Oval Office. They absolutely sicken me with their undying support of this total nutjob, who contradicts his stance every single day with an old tweet or video clip. He is not mentally fit to be a city council member, let alone POTUS.
In scripture god appointa not only good Kings but bad kings. He would then allow the bad long to reign havok on the people. Especially if they had turned against god and were practicing “evil” from ignoring the poor to child abuse. God punished the people through the bad king. So yeah If you want to go the god route you shouldn’t ignore that side of the story.
So Taylor Swift gets dragged for being apolitical but Denzel gets lauded. Interesting.
Also, cutting a lock of your baby’s hair is pretty much universal.
And I get that Taylor has done plenty of things worthy of the criticism that comes her way. But I don’t see how this rich dude gets a pass to be apolitical when she is riiiiiped for it. I could see if he was getting MORE flack and she was just getting called out for it more often because she’s more visible. But there’s a huge difference here – there’s so many kindly worded replies stating how it’s nice to see a celebrity who isn’t talking about politics for once, or how celebrities don’t owe us their political opinions, or how they can’t possibly be qualified to give them anyway.
And if he’s keeping his mouth shut because he’s thirsty for an Oscar – then that’s pretty shitty – and it’s the same argument people tear Swift over – not wanting to alienate a fanbase/committee.
I think you make some good points. Also, I think you could draw a parallel between the two in that both have established and successful careers–we’re not talking about some relatively-unknown artists who’s just trying to get his/her foot in the door and doesn’t want to alienate their burgeoning fan base or burn any bridges or whatever. People aren’t gonna stop watching Denzel movies because he says he hates Trump.
That being said, I think Swift could do both: she could continue to remain relatively apolitical but also denounce the Nazi fanbase that has embraced her. I’m not sure if she says nothing because she doesn’t want to give them attention or what..but at this stage, I think it only hurts her career to ignore it. In her case, I actually think she’s making a huge mistake by not calling them out.
I agree Kitten. I mean – she’s harming and helping herself in some ways. But I think the issue I have is that it’s the same scenario here. It’s the reaction that people have when it’s someone that they like vs someone who irks them that always leaves me shaking my head. There’s also often a lot of people who will automatically go easier on a man than a woman when it comes to things like this.
And I agree – at this point it would help in a lot of ways for her to make a statement. But you KNOW that if she did – the same people would complain about it not being genuine/good enough/soon enough etc. So for the most part – the people that already have issue with her over this will likely continue to have issues statement or not, and she probably knows that. She might be erring to continue the no political comments thing because at least it’s consistent and she can use that. I’m not saying it’s the ‘right’ move – but I can see why she MIGHT think that.
I don’t see POC holding up Denzel as the alt-left poster child for their beliefs while demonizing anyone different. TS is the poster child for nazis. They uphold her on their message boards, pay tribute to her songs, recognize her as their queen. She refuses to condemn them is what gets her dragged, especially when she tries to cease and desist someone who points it out!
Let’s not pretend they’re in the same league. Denzel’s breath does not deserve to be dragged with hers.
When a black terrorist organization lauds Denzel and calls him their perfect Adonis and promotes his career and their viewpoint is that everyone who is not black is worthy of hate. When the said group has murdered and terrorized white people. When they elect someone black, who passes legislation to hurt all nonblack people and try to deport many back to white countries just because they are white. When the group spews hate everywhere.
THEN it makes sense.
She can’t denounce a hate group, so she gets the full drag she deserves.
It is not apolitical. It is supportive through silence.
There is no excuse. It takes 5 minutes of her time. A lot less than it took to ask her lawyer to bully a small blogger.
It is this kind of attitude that put the Tangerine monster in the white house and lets him continue destroying this country.
Why do you excuse this? Either you agree, or you don’t care about minorities. Or your fanning of TS supersedes your belief in equality and tolerance. It means she is more important than justice and you are willing to excuse the inexcusable for a pop star.
Sometimes it has to get worse to get better- I think this is the underlying theme here.
I think he sort of indicated that he’s not a Trump fan. He just did happened to do it more delicately and without swearing.
If he had said he actually voted for or liked Trump, I would see a problem. But I think he just used a different form of communication than someone like Chelsea Handler to subtly indicate that Trump isn’t a good President. He didn’t seem to defend Trump voters like Jon Stewart did either.
I think #MeToo/#TimesUp is gonna hit Denzel hard so he better enjoy his obtuse, non answer answers while he can….
Why are they going to hit him?
I love Denzel, but now is a time when EVERYONE who is repulsed by the dangerous freak in The White House need to speak up! Screw being safe to promote a movie! Doubt Trumps base goes to see a Denzel flick anyway.
Denzel Washington. Icon. Great actor. But I’ve never been a fan of him as a person and I’m so not here for his mealy mouthed responses re:Trump.
To me, Denzel can do what he wants and isn’t obligated to comment on that trash person in the White House. As a black man, I’m sure he would like to not get death threats and I have no qualms with people of color not doing or saying a damn thing but surviving during these dark times. I read on Lainey that he and his wife funded Susan Kelechi Watson from This is Us to allow her to study at Oxford when she was a student and they do many other charitable things with their money to advance black people and the community. I vaguely remember them hosting a fundraiser to bring in money as a final push to get the African American museum opened in Washington DC. He puts his money where his mouth is. That’s what matters to me. Also, he looks amazing in thst picture. The movie wasn’t so good but I thought his performance was excellent (as always).
Am I the only one who thinks that journalist was incredibly rude? I know that Brits were questioned about their opinions on Brexit, but can you imagine if an American called a Brit “obtuse” for attempting to tiptoe around the subject?
I watched Malcolm X the other day and I wondered why it didn’t inspire Denzel and Spike Lee to become Muslims.
Just curious, why would it inspire them to be Muslim?