City Of West Hollywood Calls For Removal Of Trump’s Star From Hollywood Walk Of Fame After Continued Vandalism
Last week, the city council of West Hollywood passed a resolution to remove President Donald Trump‘s star from the Hollywood Walk of Fame in an unanimous vote. The vote is largely symbolic, however, as the council has no real authority to do so. The Walk of Fame falls outside of West Hollywood’s jurisdiction and the city council can do no more than urge the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and the city of Los Angeles to take action. The mayor of West Hollywood, John Duran, tweeted about the council’s decision.
West Hollywood City council unanimously passes resolution asking the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce to remove the Donald Trump star on Hollywood Walk of Fame. #horcruxdestroyed #bellicose #belligerent #unAmericanvalues #MakeAmericaintoAmericaAgain
— JohnDuran (@JohnDuran) August 7, 2018
The council vote comes after 24-year-old Austin Clay destroyed Trump’s star with a pickaxe in late July. Clay called the LAPD to report himself for vandalism, and later turned himself in. Trump’s star has been subject to several acts of vandalism since he entered the political scene. People have built a wall around it, added graffiti of golden toilets and swastikas, and covered with stickers saying “#IResist.” The most severe act of vandalism before Clay occurred a month before the 2016 election when James Lambert Otis destroyed the star with a pickaxe and sledgehammer. Otis told CNN that he committed the act of vandalism in support of the 11 women who had accused Trump of sexual assault.
The resolution passed by West Hollywood contains similar themes. According to the Los Angeles Times, the staff report lists several arguments for the star’s removal: Trump’s “disturbing treatment of women,” the separation of families by Border Patrol, and the “denial of findings from the United States intelligence community regarding Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.” City council representative John D’Amico added, “I don’t like the idea that something of that significance is telling people that if you behave like our president, you get to have a star on Hollywood Boulevard. Having a star is a privilege.”
Star Wars actor Mark Hamill suggested on Twitter that his late co-star Carrie Fisher should replace Trump’s star. Hamill — who received his own star last year — has long been a vocal opponent of Trump, as was his dearly departed friend, Fisher.
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) August 6, 2018
Leron Gubler, President and CEO of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, has spoken about the removal of stars a few times in the last several years, not only in regards to Trump, but also about other celebrities with sexual assault allegations such as Kevin Spacey and Bill Cosby. “Once a star has been added to the walk, it is considered a part of the historic fabric of the Hollywood Walk of Fame,” Gubler said. “Because of this, we have never removed a star from the walk.” After Otis’ vandalism in 2016, Gubler said, “The Hollywood Walk of Fame is an institution celebrating the positive contributions of the inductees. When people are unhappy with one of our honorees, we would hope that they would project their anger in more positive ways than to vandalize a California State landmark. Our democracy is based on respect for the law. People can make a difference by voting and not destroying public property.” He reiterated this statement after Clay’s vandalism.
After the most recent act of vandalism, the Hollywood Historic Trust immediately announced the decision to restore Trump’s star, but stated that it would take some time to repair after being destroyed so completely. It remains to be seen whether the city of Los Angeles will take West Hollywood’s resolution into account.