Thursday, October 23, 2003
Speaking For All Of Us?

Why is it that celebrities and public personae find it necessary to 'speak for' those of us who don't have access to the mass media resources that they do? TimRobbinsSusanSarandon, Janeane Garofalo, Michael Moore, Al Franken, etc., all seem to take it upon themselves to give everyone else their voice. What if we don't want it?

I can understand politicians doing it. After all, we elected them to represent us. That's their job - to speak in our place in the buildings where policy and law are debated. They can actually enumerate the populations that they speak for, no doubt with a wide variety of visual displays (carefully color-coded as to demographics). That's cool. But celebrities?

The next time Al Franken, or Tim Robbins, or whoever-else-from-Hollywood stands up and says "I'm against so and so, and so are the People!" ask yourself - who exactly elected them to this position? Did they run for the office of 'Spokesman For The People'? Who gave them the right to speak for 'Us'?

Take, for example, Michael Moore. The last speech he gave (heck, EVERY speech he ever gave) he claimed to be speaking for the People. He said that the majority of the People in the United States agree with him. See, that's funny, because last I heard, the 'silent majority' of the People in the US were conservative. Oh, well - Mr. Moore's a celebrity, so I guess I'll take him at his word. He wouldn't lie, now, would he?

Look, folks. We elect representatives for Our government. We aren't stupid. We weren't duped. We chose them because that's who we want running the country. If We wanted celebrities in office, We'd elect them (see: California). Let me give celebrities a tip as to their 'mandate from the Public:' you were selected for your talent at your craft, not your knowledge of foreign policy, not your ideas about domestic affairs, and certainly not your notions on how to spend Our money. Funnily enough, one of the most important factors in Our decision to select you for Our entertainment is the way you look. To put it bluntly: you are eyecandy. We aren't looking to you to say anything meaningful, let alone anything in 'Our Place'; We're looking at you simply to look at you.

So please, celebrities, follow Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger's example: if you want to talk politics, then get out of the movie-making business and into the political realm, because unless you want to make representing Us your life's work, We really don't care what you have to say. And we certainly don't want you speaking for Us.

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A webjournal of ideas, comments, and various other miscellany from a Texan university student (with occasional input from his family) living in Toronto, Ontario. Can you say "culture shock?"

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