Angry Wingnut Crashes The Stage At Trump-Themed ‘Julius Caesar’ (TWEETS)

As part of this year’s “Shakespeare in the Park” slate in Central Park, New York City’s Public Theater staged a modern interpretation of “Julius Caesar.” It features a title character that bears a striking resemblance to Donald Trump, while Caesar’s wife, Calpurnia, speaks with a marked Eastern European accent–much like Melania.

The scene in which Caesar is stabbed to death by Brutus and several others led a number of right-wingers to claim the play was a veiled call for Trump’s assassination. The ensuing hue and cry from the right led Delta Air Lines to drop its support for the Public altogether. Bank of America pulled its funding from the play, though it still supports the Public in general.

Despite this, the play premiered on Monday night as scheduled. The play’s first four nightly performances preceded without incident. Friday night, however, saw a response that, even by the standards of today’s right wing, is downright frightening. An alt-right blogger rushed the stage, while one of her cohorts screamed that the actors and the audience were no different from Nazis.

Just after Caesar was stabbed to death, Laura Loomer of The Rebel, an alt-right blog, charged onto the stage at the Delacorte Theater. Watch her filming the incident live on Periscope via Twitter.

As Cinna declared “Liberty! Freedom!”, Loomer charged onto the stage and yelled:

“Stop the normalization of violence against the right! This is unacceptable. You cannot promote this type of violence against Donald Trump!”

As she was being hustled off the stage, another alt-right activist, Jack Posobiec–best known as one of the loudest promoters of Pizzagate–got into the act.

While the crowd loudly booed and hissed Loomer before applauding the guards perp-walking her off the stage, Posobiec jumped up and screamed:

“You are all Goebbels! You are all Nazis, like Joseph Goebbels! This is Goebbels. You are all Goebbels. You are inciting terrorists!”

Now that’s interesting. A guy aligned with a movement that has attracted a lot of neo-Nazis accuses a play of being a throwback to Nazi propaganda? Sounds like Posobiec can’t keep his alternative facts straight. He too was hustled out by security, but not before yelling, “The blood of Steve Scalise is on your hands!”

The actors responded like any good actors would–by going on with the show. A stage manager told them to resume from where they left off–with Cinna yelling “Liberty! Freedom!” Meanwhile, Loomer screamed that the Public Theater was no different from ISIS, among other things. Despite this, NYPD officers displayed almost saintlike patience. It was only when it was apparent that she would not step away from the theater that she was arrested for disorderly conduct and trespassing; she was subsequently released.

In a series of tweets early Saturday morning, the Public suggested that Loomer and Posobiec were paid protesters–an obvious reference to a common right-wing smear against Trump opponents.

Posobiec subsequently told The Washington Post that he and Loomer didn’t coordinate their protests, as it initially seemed. He decided to attend after fellow alt-right luminary Mike Cernovich offered $1,000 to anyone who could get into the play and interrupt the show. He claimed not to know that Loomer was even there “until literally I saw her in the stands.” Posobiec added that when he saw Caesar being stabbed, it made “my blood run cold.”

Apparently Posobiec and Loomer slept through English literature. If they bothered to read the play, they would know that “Julius Caesar” actually condemns assassination–or any other attempt to “protect” democracy by undemocratic means. Indeed, Brutus and the other assassins are ultimately hounded out of Rome before ultimately meeting their own deaths. Not exactly “normalization of violence.

But as we now know, facts don’t matter to the right wing fringe. A number of right-wing luminaries flocked to Loomer’s defense, and the hashtag “#FreeLaura” is heavily trending on Twitter.

Alex Jones was one of the first to stand and applaud.

Laura Ingraham soon joined in.

As did Cernovich, who wondered how this was any different from how several Michael Brown protesters disrupted a concert in 2014.

So did Cassandra Fairbanks, a former Bernie or Buster who is now an equally boisterous Trump supporter–proving that she’s so far left she’s right.

I wonder if Jones, Ingraham, Cernovich, Fairbanks, and others would be applauding so loudly if a Trump opponent rushed the podium while Sean Spicer or Sarah Huckabee Sanders were giving a press briefing. After all, it’s no different from what Loomer did. What are actors supposed to think when someone charges onto the stage out of nowhere? It’s a completely different matter from just chanting or sitting from your seat.

I say this as someone who has a subversive streak himself. I not only took part in my fair share of protests at Carolina, but actually went as far as to burrow my way into the hypercharismatic and cultish campus ministry that burned me in my freshman year to get hard proof of their deceitful and abusive practices. But I would have never, ever thought of charging onto the stage at one of their events to disrupt it. That goes way over the line of what peaceful protest should be.

The Rebel is actively soliciting donations for Loomer’s defense fund, and Loomer herself is due to appear on Sean Hannity’s show on Monday night.

So now we know that certain elements of the right are okay with something that, by definition, is far from a nonviolent act.

(featured image courtesy Playbill’s Twitter)

Darrell is a 30-something graduate of the University of North Carolina who considers himself a journalist of the old school. An attempt to turn him into a member of the religious right in college only succeeded in turning him into the religious right's worst nightmare--a charismatic Christian who is an unapologetic liberal. His desire to stand up for those who have been scared into silence only increased when he survived an abusive three-year marriage. You may know him on Daily Kos as Christian Dem in NC. Follow him on Twitter @DarrellLucus or connect with him on Facebook. Click here to buy Darrell a Mello Yello.