Robert Redford says there is 'racism involved' in government shutdown

Actor says other politicians have a personal desire to see President Barack Obama fail.
Posted By Evan Bleier  |  Oct. 16, 2013 at 5:00 PM
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(UPI) -- Robert Redford said during an interview on CNN's “New Day” on Wednesday that racism, fear of change and personal desire to see President Barack Obama fail have led to the recent problems that have gripped the U.S. government.

"I think he's a good man. I think he's an intelligent man, a compassionate man who can't function in that environment,” Redford said of Obama.

"It's so divided now with the people that are so narrow and so limited that they would take us back into the past," Redford said. "And I was trying to figure out, why are these people behaving so stupidly? Why are they behaving so horribly that it's crippling our whole country?”

"And I think it has to do with fear. I think it's a group of people that are so afraid of change, and they're so narrow-minded that some people -- when they see change coming -- get so threatened by change, they get angry and they get terrorized, and then they get vicious. I think that's who these people are. They're so afraid of change that they're behaving miserably."

He went on:

"There is a body of congressional people that wants to paralyze the system. I think what sits underneath it, unfortunately, is there's probably some racism involved, which is really awful.

"I think just the idea of giving credit to this President, giving him credit for anything, is abhorrent to them, so they'll go against it. Never mind that it's the better good of the people, never mind that they're supposed to be in office representing the interest of the public. They're representing their own self-interests, which is very narrow and in some cases bigoted."

Redford, 77, was on CNN to talk about his new film, "All Is Lost.” In the almost-silent movie, Redford plays a sailor struggling to stay alive after his sailboat is damaged by a collision with another ship. It opens in U.S. theaters next week.

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