arts, movies, music, pop culture

celebrity

it’s always interesting to me that we “create” celebrities at all really. who came up with this idea that a person does x,y, or z and becomes this bigger than life person as a result? we are intrigued by them – we want to know everything about them, where they shop, what they eat, if they’re on a diet (rhetorical) and which one, do they sleep on their side or their stomach, do they prefer coffee or tea?  it’s extremely unnecessary and I have long believed that celebrity as a concept is RIDICULOUS and should be banned from humanity. as if you could really.

what also fascinates me is the idea that people are plagued by the dark evils in their lives as weighed against whatever positive contributions they have made and we, jane and johnny q. public, feel that we can pass judgment on them as human beings.

first of all, this judgment is based on what we are allowed to know or “find out” by our expert sleuthing (read stalking) and investigative engineering practices. we also feel that certain “evils” are way worse than others based on our upbringing, religious persuasians and socioeconomic-political leanings. (Yes, I just spelled it as -asians accidentally, but I’m leaving it.)

When someone commits some kind of “act” for the public scrutiny paddywhack machine, we weigh whatever it was against our preconceived/prejudiced notions about that person mixed with our own sensibilities of whatever it was that person allegedly did. or in some cases “is,” i.e. coming out of the closet.

but the point is that we hold celebrities up as if we know them and they belong to us as some kind of collective borg-like entity. so take away all that celeb nonsense and what do you have? some dude who makes more money than me.

i take this a step further and say that what if that celeb was your friend? what if a friend of yours was accused of something? would you automatically believe it? maybe. depends on the friend and what s/he is accused of, right? well doesnt someone you don’t even know have that same allowance as a human being? arent they allowed the benefit of the doubt? sometimes we rush to a conclusion because it eases our conscience. they did it. it was wrong. we hate them. the end. we only have so much moral ambiguity room in our souls and it’s usually taken up by our stances on things like do i tell the cashier she gave me too much change and i’m totally rushing the yellow light cuz i’m late and it’s only illegal if i get caught.

in other cases, like with someone like a Jennifer Knapp, a Christian musician who recently announced that she is a lesbian, the story is even more layered. (To read more on this, please visit Travis’s blog at http://irrrelevant.blogspot.com/2010/04/jennifer-knapp-letting-go-not-just-name.html – excellent take on it and refreshing to read from a pastor!)

The Christian community immediately takes up its banners of, on one side, “Love the Sinner; Hate the Sin” and on the other side, “Burn the Witch.”  Those of us who really truly understand Grace and Love often find ourselves bashing our heads against the wall when confronted by the latter group, hoping and longing for someone to stoop and draw in the sand and speak gently, “Whoever among you is without sin…”

And no I am so not ever going into whether or not being gay is a sin. I cant really do the entire topic justice and if you actually really cared to get a real handle on the whole thing, there are lots of other places you can look. I will only say that I am 100% sure that a person can be gay AND a Christian and that our walks with God are exactly that – a walk – and with God and God alone not the community, not the Church, and not the media fo shizzle.

And going back to the what if it was your friend thing, I would hope that if a friend came to you and admitted something like being a lesbian, you would be able to embrace her and help her work through it and at the end of the day, really, not think twice about it. Because really who your friends have sex with and fall in love with is a little beyond your scope of responsbility, not to mention ability.

Now that said, we absolutely have a responsibility to take care of each other. If your friend is doing something hurtful to herself or involved in a relationship that is physically or emotionally damaging (or spiritually if the case may be) it is absolutely your call to get involved somehow because you care about her, right? And in caring, you want what’s best. But you also want HER to know what’s best and you want her to feel empowered to make that decision for herself. Slamming the communication door on her face doesn’t seem like the best approach to that. Accepting her for who she is at that moment wherever that may be is really all we are called to do.

Anyway, so unless you are a celebrity (and if you’re reading my blog, then color  me flattered) you have no right to really cast judgment on people in the public eye. heck, even if you are a celebrity. and why do you even have an opinion at all? aren’t there more important things to argue about? i’m pretty sure there are a handful of things that should concern you a wee more. and besides, gay people make great music. dont make me list them.

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