Monday, July 14, 2008

Stray Cat Bar Brawl Raises Specter of Bias on Josh Brolin Arrest

Shreveport Louisiana police arrested Josh Brolin after a bar fight
Gotta love townsfolk who make political hay out of actor Josh Brolin's recent Shreveport, Louisiana arrest. For the record, reports of actor Jeffrey Wright being maced and stun-gunned are being played down by local authorities.

If any gossip could upstage the birth of Brangelina's twins, it's a politically charged Southern brawl.

The fracas let loose last Saturday night (or Sunday morning, take your pick) when cast and crew of Oliver Stone's ambitious Bush dynasty epic, "W," refused to exit the Stray Cat Bar. Set and lighting technician Eric Felland, allegedly behaving like a drunken ignoramus, clashed with management, prompting the arrival of a slew of local police to clean house. Four police cars and several bicycle police reportedly descended on the scene.

Josh became "embrolined" in the ensuing fray and was arrested for interfering with police, a misdemeanor. Jeffrey was, shall we say, at the "wright" place, but at the wrong time. Both posted bail and were released.

Cinematical raises the specter of bias, questioning whether the arrests reflect a desire to teach Hollywood a lesson rather than simply keep the peace. The police report is so lacking in detail, I have to wonder whether Shreveport "good 'ol boys" purposefully hid their witness notes to deflect criticism.

What I can't get over is how people like "Peter Wabbit," come out of the woodwork to heap a helping of good old fashioned prejudice on this Hollywood smackdown:

Brolin must get his looks from his Mom. Ain't much to look at is he? Too bad Oliver Stone, Michael Moore, and Spike Lee weren't involved. I'd love to see them all 'Coon Eyed'. Southern Polices will straighten you out.
Coon-eyed? That's a term of endearment I haven't heard much lately. From what I understand, it means black-eyed, as in beaten up, something I suppose lisping confederate boy would like to see happen to Hollywood's more notable "liberal" directors. Southern Polices? Now that's just poor grammar.

Do the views of lisping confederate boy reflect an inbred prejudicial attitude in Southern police departments? I don't know. Let's put it this way, I've heard stories. Incidents like this only serve to confirm my own inbred prejudices about Southern justice, a crying shame in twenty-first century America.

I'll end this jaunt into politically charged territory with one prediction. Thanks to the actions of these keystone cops, you won't see Hollywood filing many more film permit applications in Shreveport, LA. Heck, they may have single-handedly stopped filings for film permits anywhere south of Georgia.

Except Florida and Texas. That's real "W" terrain.

Update: This story seems to have morphed into a nasty brawl of its own. The comments at Hollywood Elsewhere, one of our sources for this article, quickly reached the level of smackdown, ending with a desire for a more thorough investigation. Good. Without hard facts, we were left to extrapolate from cursory reports.

The original Shreveport Times article now has links to follow-up stories, reports, and downloads. Details about the brawl and arrests are still hard to come by.

As for our links to the "Peter Wabbit" user profile and comments, they have mysteriously disappeared. Yes, someone at The Shreveport Times removed these comments, and the user profile is now under investigation. This development is somewhat curious, especially since police are refusing to release tapes of the arrest to the media.

If "Peter Wabbit" crossed the line by wanting to see certain Hollywood elite "coon-eyed," so be it. It is, however, a real loss that people can no longer verify the accuracy of my report. Up until the time I reprinted the offensive comments, the user profile and comments remained undisturbed.

Josh Brolin bar brawl comments removed from Shreveport Times

The member used a confederate flag as their avatar (hence the "confederate" reference). And while I cannot verify that a person who substitutes w's for r's (hence the "lisping" reference) is in fact of the male persuasion, I can attest to a user profile that appeared to describe a male (hence the "boy" reference). My reference to "lisping confederate boy" was a parody of the user name and avatar, nothing more; however, it strikes me as rather odd that the Shreveport Times found nothing particularly offensive about this member until our article hit the blogosphere.