The director of the Oscar contender “The Butler” is riding America’s “racism” all the way to the bank.
But some conservatives are crying foul with the way iconic President Ronald Reagan is portrayed.
“Lee Daniels’ The Butler” scored a $25 million opening weekend — at the front of the pack and not bad at all in a country made up of unredeemable racists.
But it doesn’t seem like anything can change Daniels’ mind — that only racists oppose President Barack Obama, and the only reason they do is because they’re racists.
“I think that people are angry that (Obama’s) president and I think that they are showing their true colors,” Daniels told CNN’s Piers Morgan on Monday.
Like one of the movie’s stars, Oprah Winfrey, who also became fabulously wealthy thanks to the racism of millions of white fans, Daniels has stirred controversy by casting the acquittal of George Zimmerman for killing Trayvon Martin as proof of the truth that the country is dyed deep with racial hatred.
“I end the movie with hope. He’s walking down and Obama’s giving that famous speech and then I come out of my edit room and Trayvon Martin has happened,” he told Morgan.
The movie is also taking some heat in conservative quarters for its portrayal of the Reagans – and not just because leftist Jane Fonda was cast in the role of Nancy. Ronald Reagan’s handling of apartheid South Africa was one of the knottiest problems of the Cold War – and the movie reflects that division solely along racial lines.
Reagan biographer Craig Shirley told Fox News on Monday that screenwriter Daniel Strong ignored the complexities of the question for a “simplistic” story of racism in the White House that does the Reagan and history a disservice by ignoring the wider questions involved.
But given Strong’s liberal work, he wasn’t surprised.
“You have to go to motive,” Shirley said. “The screenwriter for this movie did write the screenplay for ‘Game Change,’ which a lot of people thought was grossly unfair to Sarah Palin. And he also wrote the screenplay for ‘Recount,’ which again a lot of people thought was a retelling of the history of the Florida recount, in a way that made the Bush forces look very bad and devious, and made the Gore forces look saintly and good.”
Former Attorney General Edwin Meese III was even more forceful in his rejection of the idea of Reagan as racist.
“Ronald Reagan did not have a racially discriminatory bone in his body from his very youngest days,” former Attorney General Edwin Meese III told Newsmax on Monday.
“He was opposed to any type of discrimination or mistreatment of anyone on the basis of race, or quite frankly any other innate characteristic.”
Check out Shirley on Fox News here.