#ResistTrump irony alert men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny

Support the Rockettes who don’t want to be forced to perform at Trump’s inauguration

Donald Trump and the Rockettes. in happier days

UPDATE: Individual Rockettes who don’t want to perform at the Inauguration no longer have to. Except maybe some do? It’s confusing. More here and here.

Last night I announced I would be starting a new series of posts devoted to ways we all can Resist Trump Every Day in our own little ways. In this, the first installment, I’d like to draw your attention to a small protest with a great symbolic power.

As you may already know, Trump’s people have been having trouble finding big name acts to perform at his inauguration — though they have managed to snag an 80s cover band called The Reagan Years. No, really.

So when Trump’s party planners signed up the Radio City Rockettes, the legendary high-kicking dance troupe, there must have been some big sighs of relief in the Trump camp.

At least until some of the Rockettes said hell no, we won’t go. And their union, according to media reports, replied by telling them that hell yes, they have to go.

According to,

many Rockettes dancers, who share in a Broadway community that vehemently opposes Trump, do not feel comfortable performing at the event. Now, Broadway World has obtained an email reportedly from the American Guild of Variety Artists, the union that represents the Rockettes, suggesting that full-time employees will be coerced into performing, whether or not they object.


Per the site, the aggressively worded email from “a high-ranking member of the union’s administration” says: “We have received an email from a Rockette expressing concern about getting ‘involved in a dangerous political climate’ but I must remind you that you are all employees, and as a company, Mr. Dolan obviously wants The Rockettes to be represented at our country’s Presidential inauguration, as they were in 2001 & 2005. Any talk of boycotting this event is invalid, I’m afraid.”

As Amanda Duarte, a writer and performer who has taken the Rockettes’ case to social media, has observed, this is a pretty Trumpian situation indeed.

“It’s perfect, actually,” she wrote in a Facebook post.

What could be more fitting for this inauguration than forcing a group of women to do something with their bodies against their will?

Duarte is encouraging people to contact the show’s producers as well as the American Guild of Variety Artists and the Madison Square Garden Company to express their support for all of the Rockettes who want to boycott Trump’s big party.

Email the producers directly:

Call AGVA (American Guild of Variety Artists)
as well
make sure you express that if a Rock does not wish to perform, she shouldn’t have to and there should not be a repercussion.

Be firm, but polite. Help the boycotting Rockettes to just say no to Trump.

38 replies on “Support the Rockettes who don’t want to be forced to perform at Trump’s inauguration”

What could be more fitting for this inauguration than forcing a group of women to do something with their bodies against their will?

Bingo. We already know he has a thing for legs. And he’ll probably try to grab each and every one of their crotches, too.

Gonna e-mail in support of the Rockettes, ASAP.

OT, I haven’t been getting my email notifications of new posts. This started yesterday, I think? I tried re-signing up this morning, but I didn’t get notified of this post either.

Here’s what I wrote just now:


I hear that the Radio City Rockettes will be forced to perform at the Trump inauguration, even though several have expressed grave reservations at the prospect. I am writing in support of those who do not wish to go.

For several weeks now, the news has been full of Trump’s history of sexually assaulting women. There is reason to suspect that he will try to do the same with any woman who is forced to work in close proximity with him. Is this not a health and safety violation for the Rockettes?

Please reconsider and support their right to be safe on the job.

I hope someone’s listening.

How many Rockettes are there? A couple dozen? There has to be a routine that could be performed only by the members who support/tolerate Trump.

Honest question:

The company (and union?) seems to be of the opinion that performing at a Presidential inauguration is an apolitical act. The email stated that:

This has nothing to do with anyone’s political leanings (including AGVA’s), it has to do with your best performance for your employer, period. I will reiterate that if Hillary Clinton was the President-elect, nothing would be different, and there would probably be those who would not want to be involved because of her. It is a job, and all of you should consider it an honor, no matter who is being sworn in.

If, for the sake of argument, we accept the company’s position, is it within the rights of the company to terminate the employment of dancers who refuse to dance at the inauguration (since, if we accept that position, the dancers are refusing to work, and thus are potentially calling a strike without union approval)?

(Which is not to say that I agree with the company’s response; it’s pretty shitty to immediately reach for the pink slips at the first sign of dissent.)

And if we reject the company’s position that performing at an inauguration is an apolitical act, is there any protection that the law affords to the dancers, with regards to their political speech and their continued employment?

(Of course, an outpouring of public scorn and opprobrium for the company’s treatment of these dancers would probably also help to change the company’s mind about this matter.)

All the posts on the topic I’ve seen on Twitter today were aggressively spammed by Trump supporters comparing it with refusing to bake a cake for gay weddings.

I don’t even know how to answer, the comparison fails on so many levels just dismissing it would take way more than 144 characters.

And if it did work, then why wouldn’t they defend their right like they did with the bigoted baker?

We need a new, named internet law for the knee-jerk comparing of any conscientious objection to “refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding.”

The dumbest thing about the “Argle bargle GAY CAKE” reflex is that the main issue wasn’t even the damn cake. It was the bakers doxxing the couple for the death penalty crime of being gay in their general vicinity and cheering on the resulting homophobic death threats.

I couldn’t find a way to leave a message for the appropriate person. And when I called back, the line was busy. The outgoing message does mention a direct number — that might be the way to go.

I did send emails to all three addresses:

The Rockettes . . .

. . . shouldn’t have to perform for the presidential inauguration. Anyone who wishes to opt out should be allowed to, with no repercussions.

I don’t know about you, but I plan to resist the Trump presidency in every way possible, or else he’ll kill us all.

@David Rutten

That sounds like a good idea. Alternatively, they should perform black metal. Or read a protest letter to Trump. In any case, going there and doing something entirely different is, i think, far more effective.

So they’re having a 16-year-old opera singer instead? Oh joy. I don’t suppose she’ll actually be within ten feet of him at any point, but I find the symbolism troubling.

If a Rockette does wish to perform for a sexual jerk,she shouldn’t have to, isn’t it unlawful to force someone to do a job against their beliefs? There should be no repercussions against any woman who says no!

Now it’s occurring to me to worry about the safety of the female non-political White House employees. Like people who do administrative work, clean the building, prepare and serve food etc.

This isn’t the first time I’ve thought about that. What can we do to help protect these women/make sure they have decent recourse in the event of an assault?


OT, I haven’t been getting my email notifications of new posts. This started yesterday, I think? I tried re-signing up this morning, but I didn’t get notified of this post either.

Ah, it’s not just me then. The last three haven’t popped up in my inbox.


It’s more of an update, isn’t it? The Snopes page reports that the management of the Rockettes has contradicted the union’s email and stated that no Rockettes will be forced to perform. There’s no suggestion that the initial message from the union didn’t happen.

Thanks to everyone who emailed! Due to the internet attention this got, it looks like those who don’t want to perform won’t have to, except for some who still might have to? I added links at the top of the post.

On the email notifications thing, I’m not sure what’s going on. There were some technical glitches with some of the other automatic publicizing functions yesterday but they seem to have fixed themselves. This may be related, or it may not. I’ll check into it.

I just added a couple more posts; could those of you getting email notifications let me know if you got notifications for them? Thanks!

Yeah, what kind of union is that? You’re supposed to represent your members who have grievances against their employer, not act as extra muscle for the employer!

Also, I was surprised that the Rockettes are still around. If I were organising this event, I don’t think I’d want such an anachronistic act on the bill.

Yeah, I have to say yhat regardless of who was being sworn in, a group of young women doing the cancan doesn’t strike me as the most appropriate thing for an inauguration. Apparently they’ve performed at previous ones but…WTF?

I’m not surprised by the union’s response. Nor am I surprised that apparently the only way they can get well-known performers for this thing is to pick on ones that are under contract.

Oh the irony of the Union telling the women they HAVE to do it:

‘Labor leaders, who spent almost $100 million campaigning against Trump, said after the election they’d give him a chance to deliver on his pro-worker agenda. But the cease-fire eroded in the last two days.

First, Trump blasted an Indiana union boss personally on Twitter, prompting a blistering response from labor leaders. Then he announced his choice for secretary of the Department of Labor is fast-food executive Andrew Puzder, a union critic who’s even floated the idea of automating his restaurants to avoid worker costs.’

Does the Guild not know this?!

Here’s our letter!

Like many Americans, we just read about your scheduled Rockette’s performance for Trump’s inauguration. We find it most disturbing that your organization, a long-standing American institution, would threaten its women and force them take such a controversial and demeaning job against their will.

We hope you will reconsider this stance, and that our fellow American women are able to keep their positions – and their dignity -without repercussion.

Please keep in mind that the message you send to each individual Rockette is the message you send to each individual American girl – including your own daughters.

Yeah, I think Mormon Tabernacle Choir, I think Marine Corp Band, I think blues or opera singers hitting the high note on The Star Spangled Banner, I think little kids singing patriotic hits. I do not think of the Radio City Rockettes, although I’m sure their show is great.

Quote from Johanna’s link

So even if an appearance is considered voluntary, individual Rockettes may feel forced to perform if they are told that executives want them onstage in Washington.


I am heartened by all of the acts refusing to perform for this White House squatter, but the ones who do perform have a fair chance of getting a pass on any (or much) condemnation from me.*

The performing arts are tough for everybody, but especially for the vast majority of them who don’t have name recognition, it can be hard to turn down opportunities like this.**

*unless they’re someone like Ted Nugent

**even though this is probably a special case where the downsides of the gig are pretty obviously a potential detriment to one’s career

Apparently they’ve performed at previous ones but…WTF?

Yeah, for dubya.

But apparently not for Obama.

“Apolitical,” my left foot.

I just added a couple more posts; could those of you getting email notifications let me know if you got notifications for them? Thanks!

Sorry, I missed that you had asked this.

I’m getting notifications now. Thanks.

The Rockettes are very class act and represent New York and Radio City. Having them preform for the president elect who sees woman as objects and disrespects them is very demeaning for the Rockettes.
Unless the owner himself is a member of the Trump Club. To say there will be no repercussions if they don’t dance is utterly ridiculous. There will a lot of write ups giving for simple things then after three or four the pink slip will come.

Do what is right and respect the women that work for you and the Rockette name.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.