Legendary television actor and Hollywood director Rob Reiner warned of America being close to a civil war during a discussion of President Donald Trump’s disinformation efforts with MSNBC’s Katy Tur on Wednesday.
The Academy Award nominated director discussed the split in focus and facts within the collective ecosystem of large media organizations.
Reiner argued that, “this is the first time that you have mainstream media essentially divided into two halves, so that you have Fox, Breitbart, Sinclair and Alex Jones — which has now been taken off of Facebook, thank God — you know, trafficking in another narrative.”
“Donald Trump ran on this and it was effective, he said that the media doesn’t represent regular people, Hollywood doesn’t represent regular people, we are completely out of touch with regular people and it worked to his advantage,” Tur noted. “How do you push back on that?”
“You just have to keep pounding away, there’s nothing else you can do,” Reiner replied. “They’re just angry, their people are angry, and he will feed them whatever they want to keep that anger going and you see it in the rallies.”
“That’s what he does, he keeps stirring it up,” he continued. “But you have to stay at it, you have to stay at it, there’s no other way.”
“Bring the fact checking up to eleven?” Tur asked, referring to Reiner’s 1984 film This Is Spinal Tap.
“If you can, I mean if you can,” he answered.
“If you don’t break through, we are going to have — we are in it right now — it might be the last stage of a civil war, the last battle is being fought,” Reiner warned.
“Hopefully it won’t be fought physically, but we are more divided than we ever have been and we have a president who is back up by media … they have never been backed up by essentially, incensed state-run media,” he continued. “That’s new and it’s very scary right now.”
“If you say no collusion, or fake news, or witch hunt — you say it over and over and over again, you will cement people who believe in what you believe,” he explained. “But saying it over and over again doesn’t make it true.”
“He is the living embodiment of, ‘if you say a lie often enough, people will start to believe it,'” Tur suggested.