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Tom Hanks reassures fearful Americans post-election in MoMA speech

Published 16/11/2016

Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks

Tom Hanks spoke as he was honoured at New York's Museum of Modern Arts on Tuesday (15Nov16).

Tom Hanks reassured Americans fearful about the fate of the country after Donald Trump was elected president of the United States at an event in New York on Tuesday night (15Nov16).

The 60-year-old star was feted at New York City's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)'s 2016 Film Benefit - A Tribute To Tom Hanks.

Trump's controversial remarks and associations with figures on the far-right of American politics have alarmed many Americans, especially those from minority groups.

According to editors at Variety magazine, in his speech Tom reassured the audience the country had come through perilous times before and would again overcome its current troubles.

"We are going to be all right," he said. "America has been in worst places than we are at right now. In my own lifetime, our streets were in chaos, our generations were fighting each other tooth and nail, and every dinner table ended up being as close to a fist fight as our families would allow."

The Sully actor, who has been tipped by filmmaker Michael Moore as a future presidential candidate, added that he had faith the U.S. Constitution, which since 1788 has guaranteed the rights of its citizens, would protect them.

He also sought to cheer up disheartened Americans by saying that although the nation suffered setbacks, progress would eventually win out.

"We are going to be all right, because we constantly get to tell the whole world who we are," he explained. "We constantly get to define ourselves as Americans. We do have the greatest country in the world. We may move at a slow pace, but we do have the greatest country in the world, because we are always moving towards a more perfect Union.

"That journey never ceases. It never stops. Sometimes, like in a Bruce Springsteen song, one step forward, two steps back. But we still, aggregately, move forward. We, who are a week into wondering what the hell just happened, will continue to move forward. We have to choose to do so. But we will move forward, because if we do not move forward, what is to be said about us?"

However, despite his inspiring address and Michael's call for him to prepare a presidential run, Tom ruled himself out of running for office, as he told Vulture magazine he did not agree with the Fahrenheit 9/11 director about his political talents.

He said, "Just because I'm an actor, I can give a good speech, I agree with that, but the concept of actually voting for someone just because they can do that? Then (beloved American broadcaster) Monty Hall could have been President of the United States! I get what he's saying, I understand, but I don't buy my participation."

Stars present at the MoMA tribute included Harry Potter actress Emma Watson, funnyman Steve Martin, Homeland star Damian Lewis, U.S. talk show host Stephen Colbert and Tom's wife Rita Wilson.

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