Have you noticed a Hollywood institution missing in the debate over Syrian intervention?
Every time America is challenged to engage in an international conflict, anti-war demonstrators converge to protest the use of military force – led by at least one Hollywood celebrity willing to be arrested for the cause.
Yet it seems the Jane Fonda's and George Clooney's of the world are now silent on President Obama's intention to attack Syria for their use of chemical weapons. Where's Michael Moore when you need him?
Why the silence? The reason may surprise you.
Many Hollywood elites are afraid that opposing President Obama will somehow permanently scar their careers. Seriously? Well, yes.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Ed Asner, the actor who once portrayed a hard-hitting, take-no-prisoners newsroom editor says the Hollywood community is afraid to differ with Obama's foreign policies because they fear being labeled "anti-black."
"A lot of people don't want to feel anti-black by being opposed to Obama," Asner told the Reporter.
Asner, a staunch anti-war liberal, further showed his frustration over Obama's actions in other areas too.
"I voted for him, but I'm not proud. He hasn't thrown himself on the funeral pyre. I wanted him to sacrifice himself. Instead, he has proved himself to be a corporatist, and as long as he's a corporatist, he's not my president," Asner adds. "A lot of people have lost hope - with the betrayals, the NSA spying …"
Is Asner racist in his views? I don't think so and neither do I believe protestors were "anti-white" by speaking out against the Clinton or Bush policies during their tenure in the White House. After all, a Rick Santorum or a Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) do not base their opposition to President Obama on the color of his skin (after all, he is half-white), but on the fear that the administration does not have a clear and concise plan on what such an attack will deliver after the dust from an explosion settles.
Crystal Wright, who writes a column on her website, conservativeblackchick.com also takes issue with celebrities who are afraid to challenge the president for fear of being racist.
"None of what Hollywood says, or for that matter doesn't say, surprises me," Wright told me. "Their thinking is you can't criticize the president for his failed policies without being labeled as anti-black or a racist. Of course, the same rule doesn't apply when white journalist or pundits attack a black woman like myself for having conservative beliefs."
Yet the conservative columnist also raises a point that many ask when the gaggle of celebrities make the talk show circuit to discuss their political views.
"Why do we give credibility to actors? What do they know about politics and why do we even care? Frankly, it's sickening to me."
Like Wright, I'm not suggesting that I would like to hear more actors and musicians ramble on about political issues either. To the contrary, I would prefer to see and hear their talents in movies and in concerts only.
But I will defend their right to voice their opinion and I pray that America can move past the point of the racial hypersensitivity it has seemingly embraced since 2009 and address issues based on their merit and potential outcome.
Given the potential candidates who are likely to be our choices in 2016, America will probably have a Caucasian as our next president. It will hardly be considered a racial setback. America is better than this and our positions over the details of policy should be the subject of debate, not the color of someone's skin - especially the president's.