Sean Penn made an ass of himself when he sided with Argentina recently in its quarrel with the UK about sovereignty of the Falkland Islands.
While in Buenos Aires meeting the country’s president Cristina Kirchner, he urged Britain to join UN-sponsored talks over “the Malvinas Islands of Argentina.” The Malvinas being what the Argentinians call the Falklands.
He said: “It's necessary that these diplomatic talks happen between the United Kingdom and Argentina. I think that the world today is not going to tolerate any kind of ludicrous and archaic commitment to colonialist ideology.”
Sean, what's to negotiate, you've clearly made up your mind?
Penn is a master of modern cinema both in front and behind the camera. Over the years he has used his fame to further left wing causes that have put him at odds with the American right.
Here is not the place to debate the pro and cons of Penn’s campaigns other than to say he gives his support bravely.
I had always looked on Penn as the exception which proved the rule - the majority of Hollywood stars, empty-headed in themselves, are merely attractive conduits for the words and direction of others.
You can read star interviews many thousands of words long – how he or she had a happy/sad childhood, had always wanted to act, admired other actors/directors, and thought nudity was integral to their latest film – and not find a single interesting, original thought.
Penn, on the contrary, bubbles with controversial ideas. While his enthusiasm, for example, for Hugo Chavez is hard to swallow, at least he is getting across perspectives which struggle to find there way into mainstream media.
But by turning a blind eye to the rights of self-determination of the people of the Falkland Islands who overwhelmingly reject Argentina’s claims, Sean Penn is exposed as being just as prejudiced as the forces he opposes. It raises questions about the validity of his other beliefs.