Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Do We Always Ask The Right Question Too Late?

Death is the great unknown variable in life. You don't know when it'll happen, how it'll happen, or what actually does happen. So when someone we know passes on - especially if it occurs at a relatively youthful age (i.e. any age near our own) - these are all the questions we begin to tackle. What factors in their life lead to their untimely demise? What could they have done to avoid it? What could we have done to help? All taken up by our mind as we rumble through the somber world of mourning. This entire act gets amplified tenfold when a celebrity passes on, mainly because it's not done just by us but by the media at large.

Speculation runs rampant as everyone wants to get the big 'scoop' and that person's death comes to embody the struggle of that life - a circus. Make no mistake about it, the media treats celebrities with the same reverence as one might show a dog chasing its tail. Good for a few chuckles while they're 'cute' but inevitably tiresome and ignorable. After all, what could possibly be better for a human spirit in trouble than to have that trouble mocked and plastered across the Internet, television, radio, and print media? That'll definitely solve the problem.

Really, if I had an addiction which was built on a want to escape reality and that reality from which I sought to escape only got more aggressive and vigilant against me I don't see myself flocking towards it anytime soon. Which is why I don't think you see a lot of celebrities who overcome alcoholism, drug addiction, or depression. Sure, there's the few who find their way through all the ruckus, but it often takes the media just leaving them alone long enough for them to deal with their issues.

That also goes for the people around the celebrities too. If a celebrity is known for drinking and partying, then everyone expects them to drink and party. No matter that they just spent the last three hours doing so, they weren't at my party! So let's continue dumping drinks into the person with a clear problem in restraining themselves and champion them when they do it. Don't bother worrying about the severe social, biological, and emotional consequences this can have, it'll make my party the 'it' place to be! If I can sneak my way into the background of a television interview with them, it'll be just a happy coincidence (quick someone call 911!)

Which brings me to the fetishists who seek out these sort of tabloid garbage. It's not enough that they're privy to front row seats to the downward spiral of a human being, no... they need to make sure they're aboard. I mean, how could that person possibly survive if they didn't have the snarky tweets, facebook posts, public outcries, and/or blog posts from anybody with half an opinion on anything following them everywhere they went? If that doesn't help things, I don't know what will.

Perhaps a little compassion? Nah, it's not my fault they got an addiction, are suffering from depression, or are having a psychotic breakdown. Besides, don't addicts just say "silence ye drugs and flee," high five a couple of fellow addicts, and they're magically cured forever?

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