Using your celebrity to fight against what you perceive to be an injustice is most certainly about as American as it gets. Over the past few days, we’ve seen everyone from President Obama to private citizens, professional activists, and celebrities protest the shooting of Trayvon Martin–a Florida teenager allegedly killed by George Zimmerman, a member of his community’s neighborhood watch program. Questions have arisen about the police investigation from many, including Trayvon’s family.
That’s all well and good. But calling for Mr. Zimmerman to be investigated and putting a bounty on his head, as the New Black Panthers have done, or re-tweeting Mr. Zimmerman’s home address to tens of thousands, as director Spike Lee did over the weekend, is way beyond the bounds of calling for due process and into the arena of attempting to stoke potential mob violence.
Unfortunately, the entertainment media is either ignoring Lee’s irresponsible act outright or burying it in stories that laud the left-wing director for his activism. Case in point, The Hollywood Reporter:
Over the past few weeks Hollywood and, especially social media, have played important roles in the building outrage over the shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin and the freedom of his killer, George Zimmerman. …
Checking all the boxes, both in medium in message, is director Spike Lee.
He’s no stranger to advocacy for racial justice, of course, with many of his films and documentaries dealing with color and class in America, but through Twitter, Lee has found an instant outlet for his message and a megaphone with which to project the words and protestations of his followers.
It isn’t until the very last paragraph that THR gets around to informing its readers that Mr. “Advocacy For Racial Justice” became something closer to an advocate for vigilantism with the re-tweeting of Zimmerman’s home address.
THR not only treats this act as a footnote but even softens it with a closing wink:
There has been some backlash; the director has responded to various charges of reverse-racism and other angry accusations, and there was a slight uproar when he tweeted Zimmerman’s home address. One follower threatened to tweet Lee’s own home address, to which he responded, “Tweet it, big guy.”
Apparently, some lawlessness is more equal than others.