Note: This article contains coarse language that may offend some readers.
When performer Joy Villa walked onto the red carpet at the Grammy Awards wearing a dress that visibly declared support for President Donald Trump, there were a number of reactions.
Some immediately dished out the hate:
Democrats are calling Joy Villa a "coon." I guess not much has changed since 1863, huh? pic.twitter.com/ZI8SshhVD3
— Alana Mastrangelo (@ARmastrangelo) February 13, 2017
Some praised her for being brave:
I wouldn't even put my Trump sign in my yard for fear of becoming a target. I'm proud of your courage! Same for @Joy_Villa.
— Josh Smith (@JoshManOMG) February 19, 2017
— Kaya Jones (@KayaJones) February 17, 2017
And Trump supporters answered the move with one of their own—a run on her music that resulted in a hefty sales bump.
But in the days following the Grammys, some have begun to question whether Villa’s motives go a little deeper than simply making a political statement…
Mark Rinder, a former Scientology “fixer” (his job, according to Leah Remini’s A&E miniseries, was to discredit anyone who said anything bad about the religion) says that Villa may be attempting to draw attention to her faith. He wrote:
Unabashed self-promoter and scientology pitch-woman Joy Villa has cashed in on political divisiveness to make a killing from unsuspecting Trump supporters.
Ms. Villa has previously attempted to attract attention at the Grammy’s by wearing various forms of see-through attire. Her virtual nakedness didn’t garner a lot of attention other than to get her onto the “worst-dressed” list.
In a town and industry that has little love for anything Republican, and plenty of outright disdain and hatred for Donald Trump, Ms. Villa instantly had Trump supporters rushing to defend her, of course without knowing anything other than “She wore a dress in support of the President.”
Rinder then pointed out the fact that during the election, Villa had tweeted support for “the three people running for president who weren’t crazy” (i.e. who weren’t Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump):
If you don't like the two crazy candidates running, write in or vote for the OTHER 3 on the ballot! Don't dismiss… https://t.co/KjtjU7AOQj
— Joy Villa (@Joy_Villa) November 8, 2016
She had also tweeted what appeared to be support for Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders:
But Villa, who has made the rounds on the talk shows since her surprise outfit reveal on the Grammys red carpet, is sticking to her guns.
— Joy Villa (@Joy_Villa) February 13, 2017
She says, “I wanted this dress to be a beacon of hope, for love, for support and for making a decision to go against the grain. … It was a statement of love above all.”