Stacey Dash insists she's still 'not a feminist,' and regrets 'arrogant' approach to Trump support
The actress, one-time Republican congressional candidate, and former Fox News commentator has apologized for the tone of her expression in an attempt to distance herself from becoming the stereotypical "angry, conservative Black woman," but held firm on insisting that she's "not a feminist" or aligning herself with any political movement for now.
"I've lived my life being angry. Which is what I was on Fox News," she said in a new Daily Mail interview, referencing her tenure as a Fox News contributor from 2014 to 2017. "At that time in my life, it was who I was. And I realized in 2016 that anger is unsustainable, and it will destroy you. What people don't know is I made a lot of mistakes because of that anger."
She suspects that her outspoken support of Donald Trump — including controversial claims about Barack Obama, a call for an end to Black History Month, and praise for Trump's comments concerning the 2017 neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville — put her "in some kind of box" that she no longer belongs in.
"I don't hate anyone, I don't know where that comes from," she continued. "He's not the president. So, I'm going to give the president that we have right now a chance."
Dash has long been open about her support for conservative movements and politicians, and raised eyebrows during her time on Fox News — which included a two-week suspension from the airwaves after she claimed then-president Obama "didn't give a s---" about terrorism. The network announced in early 2017 that her contract wouldn't be renewed following a four-month hiatus from television.
According Dash, "Stacey now would never work at Fox, would never work for a news network or be a news contributor" amid the divisive political climate.
Still, "there are things that I am sorry for, things that I did say, that I should not have said them the way I said them," Dash elaborated in the Daily Mail piece. "They were very arrogant and prideful and angry. And that's who Stacey was, but that's not who Stacey is now. Stacey's someone who has compassion and empathy."
One thing Dash suggested she doesn't have empathy for, however, is the mindset that led conservatives to storm the United States Capitol on Jan. 6.
"I think the Capitol riots were appalling. When that happened I was like, 'Okay, I'm done. I'm truly done,'" she remembered. "Because senseless violence of any kind I denounce. What happened on Jan. 6 was just appalling and stupid."
Dash's reframing of her political views might not be enough to save her career in Hollywood, however, as she claimed to have "been basically blacklisted" because "being a Black conservative is not easy" in a liberal industry. Her political affiliations have over the years drawn criticism from fellow actors — namely from Vivica A. Fox and Gabrielle Union, who once implied Dash was "a crazy lady" without explicitly referencing her by name.
After making light of her views during a curious appearance at the 2016 Oscars, Dash has since sought projects that align more with her personal moral codes, like the new movie Roe v Wade, which dramatizes the titular Supreme Court abortion case. Dash attributed her stance on the issue to the influence of God intervening when she considered aborting her son, who is now in his thirties.
She later cited her life in "the hood" of the South Bronx, grappling with sexual abuse as a child, and early brushes with death (she saw her first dead body on the street at the age of three) as contributing to her outlook on politics.
"The codes of the street are very conservative," she said. "If you're not a hustler, if you don't know how to hustle, how to make your money, you're a lamb for the slaughter."
Dash — who also starred in View from the Top and Renaissance Man — further stated that, amid the fallout from her support for Trump, she hopes to rebuild her acting career with the far-off dream of playing a superhero in an action film.
Read Dash's full interview on the Daily Mail's website.