Despite his history of antisemitism, racism and misogyny, actor and director Mel Gibson continues to mount a successful comeback, indicating he still has a loyal, dedicated supporters among Hollywood executives.
But West Wing and Scandal star Joshua Malina is emphatically not among those praising his career resurgence.
The actor struck back at the idea of Gibson's return to prominence in a scathing essay for The Atlantic titled "Cancel Mel Gibson," that clearly lays out Gibson's shocking history of anti-Jewish sentiment and pointedly calls him a "Jew-hater."
Malina's essay comes on the heels of the recent announcement Gibson will return to the big screen in the forthcoming relaunch of the Lethal Weapon film franchise. Gibson will both star in and direct the next installment, Lethal Weapon 5.
Malina opened his essay by not mincing words about Gibson's bigotries.
"Gibson is a well-known Jew-hater (anti-Semite is too mild). His prejudices are well documented."
Malina is certainly not wrong about the "well documented" nature of Gibson's offenses. The actor and director has become notorious for his anti-semitism following a long list of shocking comments and incidents.
Actress Winona Ryder told the Sunday Times she was shocked in 1996 when Gibson asked if she was "an oven-dodger" when she told him she was Jewish. During an arrest for drunk driving, Gibson ranted at his Jewish arresting officer that "the Jews" are responsible for "all the wars in the world."
He has downplayed the Holocaust and made a film that traffics in the millennia-old view the Jews murdered Christ, among many other quotes and actions—including saying it will be his ex-girlfriend's fault if she were to "get raped by a pack of [n-word]s."
Given that resume, Malina asked the obvious question:
"[W]hat does a guy have to do these days to get put on Hollywood’s no-fly list?"
Malina went on to address the idea of "separating art from artist," pointing out many other artistic figures who had abhorrent views.
"[M]any horrible people produce wonderful art. Put me down as an ardent fan of Roald Dahl, Pablo Picasso, and Edith Wharton; can’t get enough of what they’re selling."
"But these three had the good taste to die."
"That makes it a lot easier to enjoy their output. Gibson lives. And Tinseltown need not employ him further."
And Malina challenged the notion of "cancel culture" and called on his colleagues in Hollywood to take a stand along with him.
"It would be great if higher-profile executives, producers, and actors would also take a stand. Then I could believe in this cancel culture I keep reading so much about."
"And I could also believe that Jews do, in fact, count."
On Twitter, people applauded Malina for plainly stating what seems like it should be obvious.
The FBI's most recent analysis showed that Jews are the most targeted religious group when it comes to hate crimes, giving all the more credence to Malina's impassioned plea that someone like Gibson not be returned to prominence.