In the wake of Donald Trump winning the election, it seems that there is a new scandal, controversy, or outrage surrounding his political team. Surprisingly, one of the organizations that Trump has spent a lot of time complaining about lately is the cast of a popular Broadway show. Though Trump supporters may be urging people to boycott Hamilton, it does not look like their methods are very effective.
The whole thing started a few weeks ago when Trump’s vice president choice, Mike Pence, went to see Hamilton. The musical about Alexander Hamilton and other American patriots seemed like a safe choice for a politician, but unfortunately for Pence, his presence was not very welcome. Pence has publicly supported diverting federal funds from programs to prevent AIDS because he wants to use them to fund torturous anti-gay conversion camps. It is therefore no surprise that he is not very popular on Broadway.
However, the cast of Hamilton remained respectful. After the play, the actor who portrayed Vice President Aaron Burr thanked Pence for attending and asked him if he could take a moment to listen to the cast’s concerns. Dixon said, “We, sir — we — are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights. We truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us.”
The cast said nothing offensive, so Pence listened to them politely and then went on his way. He was later photographed smiling as he exited the theater. Though his opinions and the Hamilton casts’ views are clearly at odds, the whole exchange was very polite. However, when Trump heard about it, he immediately got angry. In multiple Twitter posts in the early morning, Trump claimed that the staff harassed Pence. He demanded that the cast apologize, and many Trump followers started trying to start a boycott.
It is now becoming clear that Trump has not managed to negatively affect Hamilton’s popularity after all. They have only done eight performances since the event, but they have managed to get $3.3 million in ticket sales. This beats records by other popular Broadway musicals like Wicked. Musical enthusiasts were actually offering more money to try and get a coveted ticket to the popular play. It seems that the target demographic of the musical supports them instead of listening to Trump’s unfounded accusations.
The Hamilton controversy might not seem all that serious when compared to Trump nominating alt-right racists as his strategists or planning on spending millions of dollars in tax payer’s money so he can live in New York on the weekends. However, it reveals a worrying aspect of Trump’s personality. He cannot seem to handle even the vaguest suggestion of criticism without flying off the handle and making bizarre remarks. In the months to come, one can only hope that Trump learns to manage his temper better.