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Robert Redford sounded off on Donald Trump as he encouraged young people to vote in the 2020 presidential election by way of an impassioned op-ed published by The Washington Post.
The 82-year-old star published the short opinion piece on Thursday, the same day he exhibited some unusual behavior at the Sundance Film Festival. He opened the article by discussing the fact that America and its people have “weathered these challenges before,” before getting into some specific gripes with specific people.
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“It is painfully clear we have a president who degrades everything he touches, a person who does not understand (or care?) that his duty is to defend our democracy,” he wrote. “Meanwhile, those who should be providing the balance our Founding Fathers intended, such as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), are instead choosing partisan politics, blind loyalty and extreme, outdated ideologies.”
The star then pivoted his narrative to one of action, calling for people to “fix this” by way of the electoral process rather than some of the other methods for removing Trump from office that others on the left in Hollywood have latched on to.
“But how do we, as citizens, fix this? Our most powerful tool is still the electoral process. We must not be distracted from the opportunity we have in 2020 to reject hatred and division and choose civility and progress,” he said. “Let’s not talk about impeachment or put all our hopes on the special counsel: The former is mired in Washington politics, and the latter will be once the report is released. Let’s stay focused on taking back our country with the power of our votes.”
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Redford concluded his op-ed on a seemingly optimistic note saying, “There is so much damage to heal from, so much division to repair, so many good works to return to. What a worthy fight to engage in, don’t you think?”
This isn’t the first time that Redford has written an opinion piece about the current political climate. He previously used the Sundance website for a post titled “A Brief Statement about Bad Things” during the confirmation hearings of then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
The most recent op-ed came out shortly after the star appeared at the Sundance Film Festival to give his introductory remarks, which he’s done for 34 years. Redford surprised attendees when he took the microphone for only a few moments and seemed to confess that he doesn’t see himself having a big role in the festival in the future.
“I think we’re at a point where I can move on to a different place,” Redford said. “The thing I’ve missed over the years is being able to spend time with the films and the filmmakers.”
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It’s something he hasn’t been able to do much with all the introductions he’s asked to do. But he said at this point, the festival doesn’t need much of an introduction anymore.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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