On Gun Violence, Dustin Hoffman is an Excellent Hypocrite



If Hollywood turned out as many good movies as it does lousy hypocrites, I’d actually spend a few bucks to go to a theater every now and then. But no, most movies fail at being good, and most actors fail at having any integrity (with some notable exceptions).

“Rain Man” Dustin Hoffman surely lacks the self-awareness to see the irony in the interview he gave yesterday to Fox News, in which he blasted PETA for “distorting” the facts behind the animal deaths on his now-cancelled HBO series “Luck.” Hoffman denied any responsibility on the show’s part for the three on-set horse deaths that led to the cancellation. (In Rain Man voice) “No responsibility. Definitely no responsibility. I’m an excellent animal lover.”

This is the same rabidly anti-gun Hoffman who has stated that movies bear responsibility for mass-killings. Now, personally I don’t buy that claim (if entertainment-media violence caused societal violence, Japan would have the highest murder rate in the world), but that’s not my point here. My point is that Hoffman routinely pins societal violence on the media and guns. He lovingly prides himself on rarely using guns in movies (after all, why make violent movies when you can make the “Fockers” films?), and he’s claimed that all type of violence, from mass-shootings to kids attacking kids in the inner-city, is caused all or in part by the media and guns.

But when violent death struck in a way that imperiled Hoffman’s hefty salary, Hollywood had no responsibility at all. None. Innocent as the driven snow. Three dead horses on one TV show set? Hell, Hoffman dismissively told Fox, “Anyone who raises horses know they break their legs.” And that’s true. But understand the hypocrisy. Hoffman is essentially saying “sh*t happens,” and it isn’t Hollywood’s fault, even though the very document that Hoffman cited in the interview as his defense of “Luck” confirmed that the injuries which led to the horses’ deaths were “atypical,” that the injuries did not seem like normal “occupational injuries” in racehorses, that the horses, which HBO had sworn were healthy enough to be raced, had arthritis, and that drugs were found in at least one of the horses.

But no, don’t dare blame Hollywood. Blame it for every other type of death, but not those horses who had the temerity to die and cause Hoffman financial loss (to be accurate, HBO had to pay Hoffman’s entire salary for the cancelled season, a sum the Baltimore Sun called “substantial.” But Hoffman lost out on the income from potential future seasons).

Hoffman blames societal violence on his own pet causes (anti-gun and anti-movie violence), but when PETA does the same thing, blaming the deaths during the production of “Luck” on its own pet (no pun intended) cause, Hoffman won’t hear of it. “Hey, PETA, horse deaths happen. Quit thinking that Hollywood had anything to do with it.”

The truth is, Dusty, you’re not entirely wrong about that. Horses do break their legs. PETA blames the “culture” of Hollywood, which typically exploits everything it touches, and the “culture” of horse racing in general. But, truth be told, take mankind out of the picture, and horses would still break their legs. It does sometimes “just happen.” And other times, people are indeed to blame.

And that’s a concept that those on the left and right who struggle to find some great all-explaining cause for mass-murder fail to grasp. It’s not “the guns,” but it’s also not “the media.” There is no one overriding cause; case studies of mass-killings here and abroad make that abundantly clear. Each individual case is intricate and layered. Some are similar, others have no similarity at all.

In short, it’s a complex issue. Which essentially means it’s over the head of 99% of the people in Hollywood.

BTW, make sure to catch Dustin Hoffman in “Meet the Fockers III – Fock Harder,” hitting theaters this fall.


One Response to “On Gun Violence, Dustin Hoffman is an Excellent Hypocrite”
  1. pipercat says:

    ” why make violent movies when you can make the “Fockers” films?” I would say that the “Focker” movies were definitely a violent assault on our intellect.

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