In this part I will focus on an aspect of political correctness that needs to be addressed in society as a whole. It is how members of our society try to force the entertainment community to conform to their own expectations, freedom be damned. I am referring to people who have a compulsion to condemn an artist for the words he or she writes or speaks.
On one hand, it would seem legitimate on the surface to condemn someone for remarks they feel are cruel and insulting toward political figures and other celebrities based on things they cannot help. The problem with this point of view is that it is often a delusion. Most people in the public eye put themselves there and they don’t care what those who oppose them think. In fact, they don’t even watch or hear those views, so for someone to rise up to the defense of someone they do not even know and try to crush the career of such a person seems to be rather pointless because their fans are loyal. Short of a national scandal, the audience will not abandon those they adore either.
However, when one stops to think about it, the question that needs to be asked is “Why is this of concern to them?” In the first part of this series, I referred to Joan Rivers’ outspoken humor. For many her humor in later years was not well-received by some people, yet her fame continued to rise like a meteor. I can explain why that is. She represented another generation entirely. It was as if in the present, anything resembling America of the past is becoming unacceptable by modern members of society. The fact of the matter is that many still keep those values that old America held dear and there seems to be a move to revert to some of those values in light of recent world events.
If that happens, there is no need to go into an uproar over it. Everything happens in a continuous circle of change. Some things progress and at times they reverse themselves.
However there seems to be a need among some people to take to social media to try to chide or “correct” or discourage the behavior of an entertainer–whether that entertainer be a comic, actor, actress or musician and it comes from both sides of the political spectrum. “I think you’re picking on the president and/or his wife based on appearance, race, way of speaking, etc….” the list goes on. Often these people demand total silence from anyone who opposes the policies of the current political leaders in this country. They will attack fans who support them, and often throw up insult after insult on their fan pages. This is especially true on Facebook. However when those of opposing view were in power, those who agreed with that point of view could care less what was put up about them–yet the opposition made the same jokes and such. Why? They realize it is pointless to try to battle over something nobody has any real control over.
Quite frankly, when it comes to entertainment and the arts, Voltaire had the right idea about all of it–“I may not agree with everything you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
There will always be an audience for performers who have a fan base no matter how great or small. Most of those complaining are not fans of the acts and never were. When they start spewing vitriol, it only tells those that they are being hypocritical because on many of those pages they have to “like” the page of the person they are condemning in order to make a comment, and then they will post vitriol until they realize it does no good due to the fact that they are big fish in a little pond, OR until the admins of the pages ban and remove them. This is also true on the political pages.
If they keep trolling after that, then it is because they have a need to make themselves heard–just like an artist or politician that they are condemning. Taken in that sense, one could say that they are in the same club…Or can they? Either way, it shows those who think outside of the box how as a society, America has become well-known for its double standards.
Some fans even resort to attacking the fans for liking an artist. Those are the ones who make fools of themselves by trying to win them over to their point of view when it absolutely will NOT happen. This is also true of people who support one person or another on the political pages. Ironically, in trying to box the fans and/or supporters of a person or group into a corner they end up putting themselves in one and it makes them look like they are true bullies, rather than intelligent human beings capable of conducting civil discourse.
By the same token, those who dislike an artist and/or the material in question have a right to express those views as well. They get enough of a bashing from those who aren’t fans for their behaviors that the opinion doesn’t make a difference. I have actually seen non-fans of artists support people that they are NOT fans of and defend them against trolls as well. Everyone has opinions and we all know what opinions are like. I will not let either extreme dictate what they think I should or do not do. They do not live my life, I do. They don’t answer for my actions. I do. By the same token so do other entertainers, writers and politicians of all views and they should also bear these things in mind rather than take them personally. My father had a better piece of advice on such matters, and most have heard this before, “Consider the source.”
Besides all the above there is one basic fact of life that every entertainer or writer on Earth has learned one way or another and that is the fact that no one can please everyone, so why sweat bullets over it?