What will you be doing Friday morning, January 20, 2017, while Donald J. Trump is being inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States of America?
“I’ll be at work,” Chris Fuentes said briskly. “I’m always at work.”
Fuentes’ work in the film industry means he’s always answerable to a request from somebody to do something. Currently, most of his work involves overseeing the sets through which Johnny Depp is running and jumping while portraying Los Angeles Police Department Det. Russell Poole as he investigates the murder of rapper Biggie Smalls in a film called Labyrinth.
“It’s a bag of snakes,” Fuentes quips, a chuckle fighting its way through a groan of faux misery. “But I love it.”
Fuentes, who is gay, has no affection for Donald Trump, however, nor any desire to see the inauguration.
“I’d rather shave my head with a cheese grater and chew a ball of tinfoil than listen to anything out of Donald Trump’s mouth,” Fuentes said.
But Fuentes was born and raised by politically active parents in Cerritos, and remains an informed critic of that city’s politics long after moving to Hollywood. No matter how repulsed by what will unfold in Washington, D.C., he knows he’ll be following it in real time.
“I’ll probably force myself to listen,” he acknowledged. “I don’t believe in anything Donald Trump stands for, anything he does, but I still feel I must be conscious of what is happening,” Fuentes said. “I consider myself part of the resistance.”
“Oh, I’ve heard that,” Fuentes said, swallowing hard. “But this is not sour grapes. “This is my principled reaction to what is basically a political coup brought about through collusion with a foreign government. And Donald Trump has followed that model through his campaign, through the election and up to the day before the inauguration.
“The people who say we must unite, who acquiesce, who go along to get along — It’s so disappointing and worrisome,” Fuentes said. “This feels like Vichy, France.”
But the world survived the go-along-to-get-alongers of World War II.
Fuentes considered that for a moment, and realized he had to go deeper to get at where he was. He took a breath, took another, then got to it.
“This is what I would term a meteoric event, the impact of which is going to create a cloud over the global body politic, not unlike what happened in the dinosaur age. The force of Donald Trump’s meteor will be cataclysmic, will be catastrophic, will whip up a cloud so dense that it will to block out the sunlight of true democracy. Unless we are ready — and, honestly, even if we are, it may be impossible for us to come back.”