Friday, May 15, 2009

Carrie Prejean…or…We Have Gone Mad?

Let me see if I have this straight. We have a Beauty pageant contestant. A person whose primary requirement (whether we admit this out loud or not) is to look pretty. Ms. Prejean wisely desired to improve her chances in the contest. Does she study a new language? No. Does she increase her work-out routine? Perhaps. But most certainly what we DO know will increase her chances is to get breast implants!

Do you get that? We are discussing on the national stage the opinion regarding gay marriage from a woman who, in order to improve in her chosen profession thought, “Hmmm…the best way for me to excel here is to get breast implants!

And we have Perez Hilton. A blogger. Who has occasionally appeared on such weighty Television shows as hosting “The Bad Girls Club Season 3” according to Wikipedia. I did not know there WAS a “The Bad Girls Club” show let alone one warranting a second or third season or a host. And this D-List celebrity asks Ms. Breast Implants an obvious question.

Now the world is all a-flutter over the question and the answer.

And Ms. Prejean has become a spokesperson for the National Organization for Marriage. How stupid have we become?

Is she qualified on Marriage because she is…well…married? Nope.
Because she has studied psychology and counseled married people? Nope
Done anthropological research on marriage? Nope.

She’s qualified because she got Breast Implants and bumbled through an answer in a Beauty Contest. Ow, Ow—my brain hurts writing that!

Or Bristol Palin. A spokesperson for Abstinence. What are Ms. Palin’s qualifications? Well…she hopes to finish High school….she is the daughter of a Governor and Vice-Presidential candidate…and…she…oh—she got pregnant for NOT doing what she recommends the rest of us do!

Seriously, if any of the 1000’s of “Bristol Palins” out there—the high school students who became pregnant--indicated they wanted to become a spokesperson for Abstinence Education we would chuckle up our sleeves and reply, “Why don’t you finish High School, first?” And think to ourselves, “…and maybe practice what you preach.”

But because Bristol is the daughter of Sarah, we ooh and aah at the idea. We debate it on the national forum. Because Bristol is a celebrity.

So, too, is Ms. Prejean. And Mr. Perez.

We have reduced ourselves to an age where “being a celebrity” is considered the ONLY qualification to do…well…anything! Do we want to know what anthropologists or scientists or economists indicate regarding providing help to African nations? Not really…what does Bono say? Does Liberty College invite psychologists and marriage counselors and experts in the field of homosexuality and marriage to speak? Who are they?...they get chest-endowed Carrie Prejean!

Richard Dawkins is a bright scientist. But they are a dime a dozen. Write a few books, do a few lectures, and for whatever reason fate smiles on some—he became a celebrity. Now, every single Christian apologist seems to think Dawkins is the full, final and sole word on atheism. Because he is so knowledgeable? Nope—because he has reached celebrity status and everyone knows being a celebrity is THE qualification to know anything.

America is obsessed with who Paris Hilton is voting for. What Harrison Ford has to say about the environment. Charles Bronson’s take on values. A woman has eight kids, and all-of-a-sudden I am supposed to be engrossed with every facet of her life—what car she drives, what food she eats, etc. Why? Because she is a celebrity. The singers who make it into the top Ten spot on American Idol play to throngs of 1000’s during their season. And in a few short months are asking the more relevant question, “Do you want fries with that?”

Worse, we watch people compromise their values, simply to be near and see a celebrity. Liberty College teaches people to be content with their physical selves. If some female told them how she had gotten implants to become the runner-up on a Beauty Contest, and she is a Christian, so can she speak to the student body—they would say, “Thanks, but no thanks.” But make her a celebrity…

Why do we care? The proper response to Carrie Prejean should have been, “So what?” A beauty contestant has an opinion. Big deal. Frankly her answer should have been lampooned as a hilarity. (“opposite marriage”??)

I’ll bet Mr. Perez regrets slamming her for that question. It made her a celebrity. It made her an “expert” in the eyes of the Public on the question of marriage. It gave her the ultimate qualification—being well-known.

18 comments:

  1. People believe statements not on the basis of logical analysis, but on repetition and recognition of the source. A good hypothesis is that our belief formation systems are a result of evolution, where the ability to successfully pass on "memes" (social and cultural constructs) had much more survival value than the analysis of those memes. Analysis seems less necessary: reality will take care of bad memes when their holders die out or are conquered.

    The capitalist class spends billions of dollars a year — hundreds of millions of hours of "socially necessary" labor time — creating and maintaining celebrities. They are usually easily manipulated (again, imperfectly; e.g. Jenny McCarthy and her anti-vaccination bullshit) into reinforcing whatever ideological beliefs the capitalist class feels necessary to inculcate in the population.

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  2. I sure could use some implants, but even so, I've reached my expiry date and could never win a "pretty" contest. *big grin*

    Is Kevin Bacon as celebrity? ;-)

    Barefoot Bum As I understand it, Jenny is not "anti-vaccination." Not to get into it on DagoodS blog, but I see this comment made time and time again and I have heard her interviews and she consistently says she is not "anti-vaccination."

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  3. What's wrong?

    People need a way to escape from own misery. Something to think about when life gets tough and facing own problems is too hard.

    It's too bad that instead of picking up Shakespeare people turn to celebrities. It really is terrible.

    Some of us turn to blogging. With any luck that sets apart from the celebrity chasers. And it is cheaper that drinking, gambling, and street drugs.

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  4. I long for the day (in a very mild sense of the word "long") when a judge asks a contestant about, say, some complex geo-political conflict, to which the contestant replies, "Why the hell are you asking me? This question ought to be referred to the proper authorities. I recommend [insert professor] at [insert university]. Thank you." She'd have my vote, even if she had three eyes. Correction, *especially* if she had three eyes.

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  5. I read somewhere that 88 million votes were cast for American Idol this week. 88 frick'n million!! Our world is going down the toilet and all too many people care about is casting votes for a singing contest and getting their dander up over a beauty contest.

    I want to move to Mars.

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  6. **Our world is going down the toilet and all too many people care about is casting votes for a singing contest and getting their dander up over a beauty contest.

    I want to move to Mars.**

    Except that Mars is big enough that quite a few of these people could follow you. Perhaps you should pick a small asteroid, instead?

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  7. According to Wikipedia (a place to start, not the final word): "McCarthy also told Oprah Winfrey that her son was developing normally until he received his measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (at 15 months of age) and claimed that they were the cause."

    As far as I'm concerned, this statement is in fact anti-vaccination bullshit.

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  8. Back to the main point: Have we all gone mad? No, at least no worse than before; such a large scale transformation in the population would require magic. Large-scale interests and powers are attempting to influence public opinion in novel ways, ways that use and reinforce our long-standing cognitive defects.

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  9. http://www.generationrescue.org/vaccines.html

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  10. Soooooo true about celebrity - it's like automatic credibility - thank media spotlight. I think this media age has actually helped this generation become way more dumber and people becoming less more enthused to study a subject through and through before making some call on it...they will kinda just accept the media look at it.

    I despise it quite a bit because it hurts national intelligence...intelligence is he who holds the remote now.

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  11. Carrie Prejean happens to be a beauty contestant (a lovely one) that has been asked her opinion about gay marriage. Being, it appears, a traditionalist conservative, she responded by stating how she REALLY felt about the subject. Asked and answered. Had she prepared ahead of time to have a coached and contrived PC answer to better her chances of winning, she may have won and avoided the attacks by gay groups and their supporters. It seams that truthfulness and honesty instead of contrived deception for mass appeal is still important to a few brave individuals.
    I'm puzzled... why the emphasis on her breast implants? She got those to look better just the way we get contacts instead of eyeglasses and comb our hair and wash our face each morning. To look better.
    Hypocrisy, while subtle, is on display by those who condemn her for not being a "phony".

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  12. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  13. Ah, Roman. She is a hypocrite. How biblical is it to parade yourself around in a bikini?

    It is about picking and choosing Bible portions to your comfort.

    That's what this is all about.
    --

    Christian hypocrisy.

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  14. Lorena,

    Biblical? I thought it was just a beauty contest that she was trying to win and not "biblical scholar of the year"! Let's not introduce a straw man (woman) just to win a debate.:-)

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  15. Really? Just a beauty contest?

    But she did say that she wanted to be "Biblically correct" and not "Politically correct."

    If it was just a beauty contest, then why did she have to bring in the Bible?

    If she wants to be Biblically correct, then she needs to stay away of showing herself semi-naked or in a bikini. And she has NO RIGHTS to speak of family values.

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  16. Lorena,

    "Thou shalt not wear a bikini or show your breast in public"

    I must have missed that one restriction while flipping the pages of the bible.

    Why do non-believers have this idea that believers in any faith need to be condemned whenever they commit even a small infraction of the rules of their faith? To follow this reasoning, are we to assume that all believers are automatically set apart from the human race (imperfect beings) and therefore are to be more severely judged for every infraction, no matter how insignificant. Must all believers be more closely scrutinized and judged than non-believers, especially by non-believers on the strength of their purity and virtue?
    Even if she stated that her view was supposed to be "Biblically correct", her view on the specific subject of gay marriage was, in fact, correct according to a clear majority from her state.
    This is a clear case of an attack against a person who dared to view an honest oppinion which did not please a special interest group who is now hell-bent on revenge by demonizing her. I call that intollerance and a blatant attack on free speech.

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  17. How 'bout that! Something we agree on!

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