‘I Could Have Done Better’: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Addresses Maui Fundraiser Backlash

Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
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Actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson addressed the backlash to his Maui fundraiser in a lengthy video posted to his Instagram account on Sunday.

Fans criticized the famous actor after he teamed up with Oprah Winfrey to launch the People’s Fund for Maui in August in response to the devastation caused by wildfires. The pair pledged $10 million of their own money but many fans were angered that the two wealthy figures would appeal to the financially burdened general public for funds.

Johnson, who used to reside in Hawaii, confronted the backlash head-on and declared his willingness to improve.

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“When we first launched the fund, there was some backlash that came with launching the fund, and I want to address that backlash,” he told his followers. “I get it, and I completely understand, and I could have been better. And next time, I will be better.”

Johnson acknowledged the financial struggles of the average citizen by noting that he understands “money ain’t falling out of the sky, and it’s not growing on trees.” He also said he recognized that many Americans are strapped for cash and reminded his fans that he once faced the same challenges.

“I get it. I know what it’s like. I’ve lived paycheck to paycheck,” he said.

He admitted that his comments were tone deaf and that the delivery of his message could have used some refinement.

“When you are living paycheck to paycheck, the last thing you want to hear is someone asking you for money, especially when the person asking you for money already has a lot of money,” Johnson said. (RELATED: Oprah Winfrey Addresses Backlash After Asking Fans To Donate To Maui Relief Efforts)


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“I’ve never launched a fund before, but I’m a quick study,” he wrote. “You always tell me the truth — good or bad — I’ll always appreciate and protect that straight talk between us — You have my word to always listen, learn, grow and do better.”