What the hell is wrong with America’s entertainers?
I don’t mean their usual propensity for excessive sex, drugs and rock’n’roll, or even their latest annoying habit of ramming their hysterical political opinions down our throats.
No, I mean their increasing desire to have President Donald Trump killed.
Madonna told the Women’s March in Washington that she dreams about ‘blowing up the White House’.
Katy Perry set fire to a skeletal effigy of Trump during the recent BRITS awards.
Now Snoop Dogg has released a video that ends with him pointing a toy gun at a clown-like Trump, and pressing the trigger to release a flag with the word, ‘BANG’.
‘Snoop shouldn’t have done that you know,’ said Senator Marco Rubio, a man who Trump beat and humiliated with ‘Little Marco’ taunts during the Republican primary race.
‘We have had presidents assassinated before in this country’ he told TMZ. ‘People can disagree on policy but you’ve got to be very careful about that kind of thing because the wrong person sees that and gets the wrong idea and you can have a real problem.
‘So I’m not sure what Snoop was thinking.’
Snoop was thinking: ‘This will grab headlines all over America, have the whole country talking about me and sell a bucket load of records.’
That’s what all these stars are thinking when they release such provocative stuff. And right now, there’s an almost unprecedented amount of noise, attention and money to be made from attacking the divisive new president.
Just ask the newspapers, cable networks and late night talk comedy shows all coining it in from bashing Trump 24/7.
In an interview with Billboard, Snoop said he was motivated to make the video because of ‘the ban that this mother***er tried to put up, him winning the presidency, police being able to kill mother***ers and get away with it, people being in jail for weed for 20, 30 years.’
I’m sure Snoop genuinely cares about the miscalculated and poorly executed travel ban, police shooting unarmed black people, and the absurdity of a justice system that locks up black people for a mandatory 25 years for being caught for the third time with a bit of weed.
I do too.
But I don’t think the answer to these problems is to shoot Donald Trump.
Especially not, as Snoop seems to suggest, simply because he’s a white president who doesn’t understand what black Americans are going through.
After all, we’ve just had a black president for the past eight years who did absolutely nothing to stop any of these problems and arguably raised rather then decreased racial tension in the country.
Nor do I think it’s remotely ‘funny’ for a major US music star to mock assassinate a clown-faced President Trump on video.
In fact, I think it’s incredibly stupid and very dangerous.
Can you imagine the uproar if a Republican performer like Kid Rock had made a video in which he pretended to shoot President Obama?
Jokes about political assassination are never funny in a country where it’s actually happened several times.
I didn’t like it when Trump himself appeared to make one about Hillary Clinton at a campaign rally.
‘Hillary wants to essentially abolish the Second Amendment,’ he told the cheering crowd. ‘If she gets to pick her judges there’s nothing you can do folks, although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know.’
Nor did I like it when Sarah Palin’s face was put in crosshairs during the 2008 election race.
There are plenty of crazy people around who will try to shoot politicians if they get riled enough by angry, violent rhetoric.
Just look at the horrific murder last year of young female British MP Jo Cox, who was shot dead in the street by a far-right lunatic.
The really baffling aspect to Snoop’s behaviour is that he has spent the past few years campaigning against gun violence.
I myself interviewed him for CNN in 2013 when he released a record called No Guns Allowed, promoting love and peace not firearms.
We talked a lot about guns then and in particular the exploding gun violence epidemic in Chicago.
‘It’s miscommunication,’ Snoop told me. ‘The youth are in revolt and doing what they want to do because no one is there to give them directions on what they need to do.’
Snoop saw himself as the perfect guy to give that direction.
You can insist all you like that you’re not REALLY advocating assassinating President Trump because he’s dressed up like a clown and you’re using a toy gun.
Or that you’re not actually urging people to shoot cops when you say, “‘F**k the police, from a black man’s point of view. Spray that s**t, say that s**t, we right in front of you, each and every one of you.”
But that won’t wash with me.
All those young kids in Chicago that you were so keen to give up their guns will watch this video and see it as a call to arms.
Not just against the police, who many of them already hate and distrust but against their President, YOUR President, and again, someone many young black Americans already hate and distrust.
It’s hard to imagine a more incendiary thing to do at a more incendiary time.
Shame on you, Snoop Dogg.
I just hope and pray that no crazed fool now acts on your pathetic stunt and actually tries to shoot a police officer or President Trump.