Bret Easton Ellis: Trump is president, get over it

Americans need to get used to the fact Donald Trump was elected as president, US writer Bret Easton Ellis has said.

The American Psycho author hit out at celebrity culture for their continued protests at Mr Trump’s presidency and said there had been an “overreaction” to the rise of the Republican businessman.

Speaking as he launched his art exhibition in central London alongside multimedia artist Alex Israel, Bret said: “I didn’t vote Trump, I’m just saying the hysteria is bothering me a lot more than the reality of what he’s doing.

Bret Easton Ellis spoke out against protesters (Yui Mok/PA)
“I don’t really know what the path to power is with protest, it’s done, this is where we are. If you wanna protest, protest the DNC, protest Hillary, protest whatever. But what you’re protesting here is an elected president.

“I think the protest is aiding this divisiveness, social media is aiding this, celebrity culture, the worst, is aiding it.”

Criticising former president Barack Obama’s administration for carrying out deportations, the writer added: “It is all about image and how people are swayed by surfaces and Trump disgusts people.

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The writer says people should accept Donald Trump won (Stefan Rousseau/PA)
“They see this big orange lump, angry, big puffy face and it really is quite a different step from the celebrity hep-cat, glamour of Obama.”

He added celebrities such as Meryl Streep commenting on politics was “hashtag why Trump won”.

“People love celebrities, I love celebrities, I’m obsessed with celebrities, I’ve written books about celebrities, so I love that celebrity culture exists. But when celebrities become these kind of strident, political advisers, wagging their finger, really people don’t buy it.

“It did not help Hillary Clinton at all having this mountain of celebrities on her side. Rejection, rejection.”

Hillary Clinton, who had various celebrity supporters (Win McNamee/PA)
He added: “It happened. He was elected. He is our president. He’s moving very quickly. It’s bothering a lot of people. He is doing what he said he would do. He is elected.

“I do think there has been an overreaction to what’s going on. But that’s just endemic in the culture.”

The pair’s exhibition, titled Alex Israel and Bret Easton Ellis, matches stock images of sunsets, surf and aerial shots of Los Angeles to suggestive text penned by the author.

Showbiz, by Alex Israel and Bret Easton Ellis (Alex Israel and Bret Easton Ellis; images courtesy iStock)
One, written before Trump was elected, uses the phrase “can 50 million people be wrong? Probably”.

Alex said the piece was originally about US singing programme American Idol because it is his “favourite TV show”.

He had initially omitted the work from the pair’s Beverly Hills exhibition last year but said he brought it to London “because its meaning could be interpreted in so many different ways based on current events”.

Alex Israel and Bret Easton Ellis is on at the Gagosian Gallery in central London between February 3 and March 18.

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