Chris Evans, who’s been vocal about his political views for years, has not been shy about his reactions to a group of rioters as they breached Capitol Hill on Wednesday. But as his responses went viral, Evans’ followers and critics were quick to point out previous instances of hypocrisy ranging from spreading imperialist propaganda to his association with Republican lawmakers leading the charge to throw out electoral college votes.
He started off with a generic expression conveying shock at what took place on the Hill.
Evans then pointed out the white privilege and benefit of the doubt that the rioters were given by Capitol Police to highlight how differently Black and brown protesters would have been treated by police. It’s a point that has been made many, many times as people used photos and video to compare the stark difference between how the insurrectionists were treated versus Black Lives Matter protesters during peaceful protests over the summer.
Evans also vaguely waved toward the institutions, white supremacists, extremists, and people in power—all the way up to Donald Trump—that he said led to Wednesday’s events. Again, it’s pretty standard stuff, and you wouldn’t have to search far to find many other celebrities who’ve expressed similar sentiments.
Evans’ tweets immediately went viral in part because he’s an outspoken celebrity who’s spent the past several years denouncing Trump’s rhetoric to his millions of followers on social media. This usually leads to people referring to Evans as Captain America, the fictional superhero he spent a decade portraying. But some people also took issue with what they felt was hypocrisy.
Some critics pointed to Evans’ history in the MCU as one of many factors given that many of the rioters attended the insurrection with themed gear, including shirts that appeared to copy the logo for Captain America: Civil War. Others took to sharing photos he’s taken with the Armed Forces, the police, and Republican politicians including Ted Cruz, who was one of the lawmakers who pushed the efforts to disenfranchise millions of votes to help overturn the election. There was even a nod to how generally unhelpful his tweets were.
But some also took issue with Evans’ political platform A Starting Point, which was designed as a place to highlight politicians’ policies without any of the rhetoric that you might find on a cable news show. It’s a project in which Evans reached out to both Democrats and Republicans to participate, which was criticized from the beginning for its ability to both-sides political issues. Some of the politicians he’s met with for the project? Cruz and Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas), who initially supported a push to delay certifying the election but ended up voting no on Wednesday’s challenge to certifying Joe Biden’s win.
But others feel that blaming both Evans and his platform for what happened on the Hill Wednesday is unfair.