An Open Letter to Fox News: We work. And we work hard.

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Dear Fox News,

I am a working actor in LA. I am also a babysitter, trainer, food prep chef, and bartender. What I am NOT is an actor in the 1%. 

I feel the need to explain this to you based on the "article" (aka repost from Daily Mail) you opted to publish on your site. The actors whose names you know, the ones you would know anywhere (without having to look them up on 3 different websites), they are the top 1%. They are the Bill Gates of acting. Or the Donald Trumps of acting, as I believe is a preferred reference for your site patrons. 

The rest of us all have multiple streams of income. Imagine for just a moment if you will you landed your version of a dream job. Now imagine you got to do that job for a day or two. Maybe more if you're really lucky. And now picture the days after that job. The check is in the mail, but not your bank account. You don't know when your next work day will be...one week, 17 months? Both potentials. But that job was so so so amazing it is worth working and waiting for the next one to come. So...whatever will you fill your time (and refrigerator) with?

It is almost impossible to get a straight number from them, but only a small SMALL percent of actors in the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) make enough to qualify for their unions Health Insurance. That is $33,660 for standard eligibility. The average rent in LA is $2,265. You do the math. The exact same issues affecting our nation, the squeeze of the middle class, the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer...that's true for us too. 

The anger I felt at the reading of this "article" was overcome almost immediately with my need to teach, to educate, to explain. To anyone who would listen who has never been late for work because an audition waiting room was too crowded, who has never had to choose between a 1% chance at a job versus a 100% chance for making rent. To you, I hope I am speaking. 90% of the people you see on TV or in film are working or will eventually work elsewhere. Either to feed a need inside themselves...or simply to feed their families. We work, and we work hard. There is no ladder to climb or fall from here. There is simply a cliff and we all chose to jump. We fall at different speeds and sometimes we catch a branch for a moment on the way. 

Thank you for your time, I have to go to my 3rd job now. 

Sincerely, 

Sam Valentine