Column: LaBeouf promotes unity with livestream

People have been talking about Shia LaBeouf a lot recently and it isn’t because of a new role or some YouTube video, telling people to follow their dreams. LaBeouf brought back a popular tool in his entertainment repertoire: the livestream.

LaBeouf saw success when he livestreamed himself watching his entire film discography in chronological order in a theater in New York City, so the next logical step for LaBeouf was to bring the power of protest to the internet, 24 hours a day, seven days a week for the next four years titled “He Will Not Divide Us.”

LaBeouf and his fellow protestors’ chant is a little different than most crowds’. A simple “He will not divide us” is repeated over and over again, day after day and the weight of the protest has resonated with a lot of people.

People have been ultra critical of LaBeouf and his position on the controversial presidential election and subsequent despot in chief Donald Trump. Statements like “Why don’t these people have jobs to go to?” or “Don’t these people have anything better to do?” have dominated the rhetoric revolving the livestream, but in reality, LaBeouf is enabling millions of Americans with a single camera and a simple website design.

This is a reminder of protest and the incredible weight it can carry. Things like the incredible world-wide Women’s Marches and LaBeouf’s stream show first hand how the first amendment works and has gotten so many first-time protestors on the streets, standing in solidarity and shouting at the top of their lungs. People are more aware of the issues because of an actor who used to be in “Even Stevens” had the gusto to step up and shout out against hypocrisies and injustices he sees in United States politics and that’s truly an awesome thing.

LaBeouf could have fallen into mediocrity after his last artistic livestream, but really has provided young people a first amendment hero of sorts. LaBeouf has even been recently arrested in relation to something that happened during one of the “He Will Not Divide Us” sessions.

No matter how silly it may seem to follow a former comedy actor into the realm of politics head first, LaBeouf seems really genuine and so do the people who join him for his streams. Maybe more people will take to their GoPros and laptop cameras to join in solidarity and share a message to the world from rational Americans: he will not divide us.

William Izzo can be contacted at [email protected]