Two actors who appeared in an anti-union propaganda video for mega-retailer Target, which made waves on the Internet this week after being released by Gawker, have been discovered to be a part of the very evils their scripts warned so sternly about: labor unions.
And in a stroke of irony, the store’s anti-union spokesman, actor Ric Reitz, can be seen again later this summer filling the role of president of the United States in the Hollywood blockbuster Green Lantern.
He’s also had numerous roles in Hallmark’s Hall of Fame TV series and appeared in films such as Diary of a Mad Black Woman, Juwanna Man and Remember the Titans.
His co-star, Nicky Buggs, is also a union member who’s appeared in movies like Secret Lives of Bees, Road Trip and TV show Army Wives.
Target even shot its commercial with the blessings of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA), a union.
“If someone hires me to play a rapist, does it make me a rapist? You take the job, and you’re an actor,” Reitz reportedly told Salon’s War Room. “Am I pro-union? Absolutely.”
In a statement to reporter Justin Elliott, a spokesman for the AFTRA insisted that they do not “censor free speech,” and wouldn’t have told the actors they could not participate in the ad.
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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