A public figure makes an uninformed, reckless or irresponsible comment on an important issue. (The comment could be unscientific, false, and/or emotionally based.) The US news media gives much attention to the comment. Quickly, most Americans are made aware of the comment.
Why the outrage or angst from some quarters?
The reality is that we are not so much angry at the actor, actress, singer, musician, etc. that makes such a comment as we are troubled by the fact that so many unthinking people will accept what he/she says as true and valid even when it is not. Public figures do have influence. Yes, they are free to say ridiculous things. But, the fact remains that so many persons in society are loath to think critically (if they are even able to do so) that reckless words can be harmful.
Some of these Hollywood public figures are prone to verbal missteps due to having serious substance abuse problems. And, various forms of mental illness cannot be excluded here in some cases. Alas, acting ability, a good voice for singing, and perhaps good looks are independent of intelligence and good character.
Take for example Barbra Streisand. I enjoy many of her songs as she has a great voice for singing. From time to time, Ms. Streisand will make a troubling comment that will be given much attention by the media. From these comments, she gives no evidence of ever having read nor comprehended the US Constitution (the de jure governing document of the land). Sadly, we (in the US) are losing our true rights step by step.
But, why should she care – at her age? But, what of the young? They will have to live like termites under an authoritarian, soon to be totalitarian, corporatist state.
Just food for thought for the few that are willing to think in these times.
An unrelated image from our personal archives. That hunk of metal is huge.
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