The donations flooded in after a troll posted a comment on one of Kal’s Instagram photos, saying: “Yeah it got cancelled because you don’t belong in this f**king country.”
The 39-year-old actor hit back with a fundraising page listed as: “Donating to Syrian refugees in the name of the dude who said I don’t belong in America.”
Speaking to CNN today, Kal said: “People tweet ridiculous things all the time, right? I saw this and thought that we’re all feeling inspired to do the right thing.
“Look, I’m a pretty privileged guy, but I was reading that comment thinking ‘What about the 14-year-old me, or the kids who look like me out there who don’t have the luxury of this kind of platform?’
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Actor Kal Penn helps raise $550,000 for Syrian refugees after 'racist' online troll hate
Actor Kal Penn helps raise $550,000 for Syrian refugees
People tweet ridiculous things all the time, right? I saw this and thought that we’re all feeling inspired to do the right thing.
“I thought that maybe we could raise $25,000 and show guys like that that we’re better than this, because I know we’re better than this. All I did was put up a page, it speaks to the tens of thousands of people who felt the same way I did.”
Kal, who served as Barack Obama’s public engagement advisor, has seen the momentum grow even quicker after President Donald Trump’s executive order denying entry into the U.S. for Muslims from seven Middle Eastern countries.
After raising a huge amount of cash in such a short time, Kal posted a video online thanking the world for being “awesome.”
The message that prompted actor Kal Penn to help raise $550,000 for Syrian refugees
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Children of the Refugee Crisis
Tue, September 20, 2016
A photo report on the growing refugee crisis in Europe featuring children, some of who are orphans struggling to survive.
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“Thank you so much. I just thought it would be an uplifting way to raise $25,000,” said Kal. “Let’s see if we can continue to show the world that the American people care very much for everybody, especially refugees – contrary to what our administration is now trying to do in our names.
“What a beautiful way to resist and show some love. Gosh, this is awesome! Love you guys.”
Many supporters are contributing to Kal’s fundraiser in Donald Trump and Steve Bannon’s names.