Billionaire political donor and philanthropist David Koch passed away Friday morning. He was a man well known for putting vast amounts of money behind causes to advance freedom, and for that, he had many political adversaries.
But several high-profile leftist activists couldn't bring themselves to acknowledge Koch's contributions to causes that benefitted people outside the political realm — or to even allow the man's family to grieve — in the hours after his death was first announced.
A slew of public figures, including celebrities, took to social media to celebrate Koch's passing. Some taunted his equally-famous brother, Charles, openly wishing he would be soon to follow.
Hollywood actress Bette Midler proudly cheered Koch's death in a series of tweets and retweets for her 1.7 million followers to see: "I tweeted the [sic] #CharlesKoch had died, instead of #DavidKochIsDEAD. I'm sorry to give others false hope. Guess it was just wistful thinking. As we watch the Amazon Rainforest burning, all the #GlobalWarming culprits are foremost in one's mind."
I tweeted the #CharlesKoch had died, instead of #DavidKochIsDEAD . I'm sorry to give others false hope. Guess it… https://t.co/MBvcdHiVLt— Bette Midler (@Bette Midler)1566580579.0
Midler then went on to shame others for paying respect to Koch's memory. In response to a message sent by The Heritage Foundation's president, Kay Coles James, Midler wrote, "With all due respect, Ms. James. f*ck you. 'A friend of liberty' Yes, his own and his family's," before lobbing more insults.
With all due respect, Ms. James, fuck you. "A friend of liberty" Yes, his own and his family's. The rest of us c… https://t.co/1bhym7nAt8— Bette Midler (@Bette Midler)1566581264.0
Actor Ron Perlman reacted to Koch's death by tweeting, "Wishing the Koch brothers a speedy reunion." Perlman was confronted by conservative radio host Dana Loesch, who informed him that the Koch brothers' have championed social philosophies in line with many on the left, and gave to philanthropic causes that transcend political bounds.
@perlmutations Ron, this is bad. The dudes are social liberals and fiscal libertarians. They fund cancer research,… https://t.co/F5agSPkKxv— Dana Loesch (@Dana Loesch)1566595748.0
Perlman was unapologetic, telling Loesch, "All the good deeds there are can't replace the lives lost that come with peddling agents of death for profit."
There are too many to name here, but journalists, authors, filmmakers, and activists by the hundreds took the opportunity to relish in the death of a stranger they considered a political foe. The Independent even printed an op-ed declaring Koch's "life's work was the destruction of others."
In the sea of vitriol during Friday's online display, it is noteworthy that a message of reason was sent out from someone who is typically on the front lines of conservative-bashing. Actress Alyssa Milano took some heat herself (from fellow progressives), just for tweeting simply: "Celebrating a man's death while fighting to abolish the death penalty is a bad look for democrats/humans."
Celebrating a man’s death while fighting to abolish the death penalty is a bad look for democrats/humans.— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa Milano)1566579520.0