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Under pressure sponsors drop NYC Trump assassination play; taxpayers want their money back, too

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The theatre-going public tells the art community what’s tasteful — it’s not the other way around.

Public outcry is causing sponsors for New York City’s “Shakespeare in the Park” production of “Julius Caesar” to go down faster than the emperor did on the Ides of March, all due to its not-so-subtle depiction President Trump as the Bard’s Caesar.

The producers’ intent was in-your-face obvious and brutal — to depict the assassination of the president by aggrieved minorities and women.

Delta Airlines was the first corporate sponsor to pull out after previously expressing reservations for the tasteless production. It made its announcement in a quartet of tweets:

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Shortly after the air carrier dropped its funding Bank of America did the same and announced it was unaware of the production’s intent until it was presented onstage.

“Bank of America supports art programs worldwide, including an 11-year partnership with The Public Theater and Shakespeare in the Park,” a spokeswoman told the New York Daily News. “The Public Theater chose to present Julius Caesar in a way that was intended to provoke and offend. Had this intention been made known to us, we would have decided not to sponsor it.”

The banking giant’s decision was also a nod to public pressure.

The public, in the main, expressed gratitude to the sponsors for pulling its funding and wondered how long before the remaining corporate patrons followed suite.

Public theater and the “Shakespeare in the Park” series doesn’t rely solely on corporate donations — it also receives funding from taxpayers, prompting a question from the president’s eldest son.

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It’s easy enough for individuals and corporations to drop its funding for public theater. The question now is how will the public get its money back?


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