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Monday, May 16, 2011

Escaping Celebrities

Multiple flat screen televisions in diners, magazines at the supermarket checkout line, billboards on highways & buses. How can any of us escape being bombarded by images of and information about celebrities? And what message is internalized when we can easily know more about their lives than we sometimes know about the lives of the people with whom we regularly interact?

I don't consider myself much of a celebrity watcher but I can't deny I know more about some of them than I even care to own up to. Here's a recent example: Although I've never watched the TV show "Two and a Half Men" (honest!), I know who is going to replace Charlie Sheen. How do I know? Better yet, how do I know Charlie Sheen was the star of a show I've never watched? Answer: This appeared as a "news" story on my Internet Explorer (yesterday, I think) when I booted up my laptop.

In my March 19 posting  ("Being Tested"), I suggested the people our media foists upon us as heroes often leave me cold. It is possible even the word hero has been cheapened partly because it's so difficult anymore to escape celebrities, some of whom have never done much that is remotely heroic. What is your view? More importantly, what strategies can you offer me to help escape these people?


1 comment:

  1. it's futile to try and escape-I don't let myself get absorbed into the lives of celebrities but they are a huge part of our culture and whether we accept it or not; they shape our attitudes,(subconsciously) especially young adults.
    Unfortunately, Gen Yers don't yet have the wisdom to see where celebrities fit within the bigger scheme of life.
    I thank Oprah and Barbara Walters (celebrities) for being candid in that they host celebrities and get them to talk about their behind-the- camera lives. In this way we can see them as human and not much different from us.
    So, all lives tell a story we can learn from. The world is a truly facinating and interesting ride..and celebrities give us another glimpse; sometimes into the dark side.
    I don't feel that Charlie Sheen should warrant as much attention as a policy maker and intellectual like Obama, but we have to accept that at least 1/3 of the population in this country wants entertainment and are voyeurs.
    I say, it's all good! Celebrities (and the attention they get) are a gauge of societal values and mores.