Hollywood icon Chris Pratt caused quite the buzz on social media for wearing a patriotic t-shirt that Yahoo Entertainment called a “controversial symbol.”
Pratt, most known for his acting roles in Parks & Rec and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, wore a t-shirt which had the American flag with the words “Don’t Tread On Me.”
The writing and snake combo on its own is depicted on the Gadsden flag; a symbol created by Christopher Gadsden, a Charleston-born brigadier general in the Continental Army.
It came to prominence during the Revolutionary War of the US by colonists who wanted independence from Great Britain.
Although it is one of the symbols and flags used by the U.S. Men’s Soccer Team, Metallica, as well as some libertarian groups, over the years the flag has been adopted by far-right political groups like the Tea Party, as well as gun-toting supporters of the Second Amendment.
It has, therefore, become a symbol of more conservative and far-right individuals and, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission of the US, it also is “sometimes interpreted to convey racially-tinged messages in some contexts.”
The photo of Pratt wearing the t-shirt quickly circulated online with people commenting that they were no longer a fan of the actor, they would no longer be watching his films, and that he lost the “Chris War” (a mock competition with fellow actors named “Chris”: Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, and Chris Pine).
Check it out…
Vulture staff reporter Hunter Harris posted the picture of Pratt without any caption:
— hunter harris (@hunteryharris) July 15, 2019
Some people were frustrated with Pratt’s patriotism…
I like him, but all these small things about his politics makes me wonder when he’ll say something transphobic, tank his career, and do the full heel-turn into a Fox commentator https://t.co/Emfzd02GmK
— Tim Byrnes (@timbyrnes89) July 16, 2019
— Areola Grande (@crisismattie) July 16, 2019
— Taylor Robinson (@TeTeRobinBird) July 15, 2019
the worst chris
— 𝐻𝑜 𝒯𝑜𝓎 𝒩𝑜𝑜𝒹𝓁𝑒 (@hotoynoodle) July 15, 2019
Chris Pratt is cancelled.
— ItsPlanetoids (@IPlanetoids) July 16, 2019
Agh, I was really hoping this guy wasn’t as bad as he seems to be. Funny people shouldn’t be on the haters side
— Sebastián Píriz (@SebastianPiriz) July 16, 2019
This is so disappointing.
— ~i could be your hero baby~ (@mintsuck) July 16, 2019
— aaliyah (@baekzie) July 15, 2019
He’s really ruining my Parks & Rec reruns.
— Jody M. Caldwell (@jodymcaldwell) July 15, 2019
…while several others applauded it:
I knew I liked this guy. Gotta find me one of these shirts.
— Mark Boone (@markboone219) July 17, 2019
i’m an even bigger fan now
— Ben (@TheEmoToaster) July 16, 2019
— Brian Bledsoe (@BrianLBledsoe) July 17, 2019
There’s literally nothing wrong with this.
— AmateurExpert (@AmateurExpert3) July 16, 2019