Hollywood Uses Influence to Push Obamacare, Denies It Has Influence on Violent Culture
Well if a celebrity is for it, then it must be a good idea. The Obama administration launched a new social media campaign last week using controversial celebrities as spokespeople for the Affordable Care Act. Counting the celebrities’ Twitter followers alone, that gives the administration access to more than 67 million people to push the president’s mandatory healthcare program.
Singer Lady Gaga, comedians Sarah Silverman and John Hodgman, “Revenge” actors Nick Wechsler and Emily VanCamp, and “Parks and Rec” star Amy Poehler, are just a few celebrities who tweeted out or Instagrammed pictures of themselves holding signs with the hashtag “#GetCovered” as part of Obama’s social media campaign to get young people to sign up for his healthcare plan.
Once again, Hollywood celebrities were eager to use the power of Tinseltown to push a liberal message, without ever acknowledging that same power is used to promote violence. In early 2013, the top five movies at the box office included 65 scenes of violence, with 185 individual victims. Quentin Tarantino’s “Django Unchained” was a huge part of that total. But when Tarantino, who often relies on over-the top violence, was questioned about that, he said it was “totally disrespectful to [the Sandy Hook victims’] memory. Obviously, the issue is gun control and mental health.”
Get Covered was only the latest of a series of celebrity oriented initiatives. Hollywood A-listers from actor George Clooney to rapper Jay Z have raised millions for the president’s election. A wide variety of mostly entertainment media outlets have promoted Michelle Obama’s food crusades. In the first four years of her husband’s presidency, the First Lady appeared on everything from Disney’s “iCarly” to working out with “The Biggest Loser” at least 44 times.
As part of the new “#GetCovered” campaign, Vampire Diaries star Nina Dobrev even posed topless with the hashtag sign covering her. On October 1, singer John Legend tweeted, “F the shutdown. The Health Insurance Marketplace is now open in every state. Don’t wait another day to #GetCovered!”
This is somewhat of a repeat performance of last year’s publicity stunt where liberal starlets took to Twitter with pictures of themselves with pithy political messages promoting “women’s rights,” (which apparently meant government-funded abortions and contraception.)
After all, celebrities are the pinnacles of wisdom, especially when it comes to understanding politics and the American people. Sarah Silverman, for instance, last April called religious people “addicts & sociopaths;” conservatives racists, and tweets crass jokes like “Got a quickie aborsh in case R v W gets overturned,” and “My vagina has off-beat good looks.”
Along with celebrities, abortion providers like Planned Parenthood, Will Ferrell’s “Funny or Die” channel and MTV’s “Rock the Vote” also tweeted out the hashtag. Funny or Die even made a video showing all the different types of people who would benefit from Obamacare, that plays like a government propaganda film.
Women’s magazines like Cosmopolitan and Glamour have also run articles listing the ways Obamacare will benefit young women.
Having MTV, teen mags and young celebrities on Twitter promote a largely unpopular healthcare bill is a smart marketing strategy since young adults tend to get their information through social media and entertainment
However, healthy young people are the group who will be hurt the most by signing up for Obamacare. According to Reuters, “The administration aims to sign up at least 2.7 million young, healthy Americans in Obamacare's insurance plans in their first year to offset the costs of sicker beneficiaries.”
As of October 4, 2013
Lady Gaga: 40,233,493, more than 10,000 retweets for one tweet
Pharrell Williams: 2,328,117
Olivia Wilde: 1,130,097
Nick Wechsler: 37,958
Mia Farrow: 267,071
Martha Plimpton: 145,611
Lance Bass: 363,132
Russell Simmons: 2,926,318
Chris Noth: 16,896
Amy Poehler: 28,104
Kerry Washington: 1,134,614
Alyssa Milano: 2,579,582
Sarah Silverman: 4,718,496
John Legend: 4,848,354
Nina Dobrev: 4,027, 021
Pearl Jam: 2,219,022
John Hodgman: 927,020
Justin Long: 106,984
Dule Hill: 208,309
Taye Diggs: 232,851
Nikki Reed: 674,060
Jessica Szohr: 175,937
Emmanuelle Chriqui: 127,822
Scott Foley: 74,140
Bryan Greenberg: 177,089
Marlon Wayans: 1,463,682
Total is: 67,374,420
— Kristine Marsh is Staff Writer for MRC Culture at the Media Research Center. Follow Kristine Marsh on Twitter.