Seems to apply Hollywood as well as professional sports.

Exchanges of whatever comes to mind - not necessarily boat related

Seems to apply Hollywood as well as professional sports.

Postby Tom H » Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:29 am

I hate to admit it but the Hollywood elite got under my skin as I listened to their speeches at the Womens March in Washington DC. Black people in chains and blowing up the White House I thought was way over the top for political rhetoric. Then I got the following email and things came into focus. The only thing missing was not including the multi-millionaire sports figures.

This letter pretty much nails this situation with Hollywood celebrities being Anti-Trump.

Dear Hollywood Celebrities,

It's time to wake up now. Get this! The only reason you exist is for my entertainment. Some of you are beautiful. Some of you can deliver a line with such conviction that you bring tears to my eyes. Some of you are so convincing that you scare the crap out of me. And others are so funny you can make me laugh uncontrollably.

But you all have one thing in common. You only exist and have a place in my world to entertain me. That's it. Nothing else!

You make your living pretending to be someone else. You play dress-up like a 5-year-old. Your world is a make believe world. It is not real. It doesn't exist. You live for the camera while the rest of us live in the real world. Your entire existence depends on my patronage. I crank the organ grinder, and you dance.

Therefore, I don't care where you stand on issues. Honestly, your opinion means nothing to me. Just because you had a lead role in a movie about prostitution doesn't mean you know what it's like to be a prostitute. Your view matters far less to me than that of a someone living in Timbuktu .

Believe me or not, the hard truth is that you aren't real. I turn off my TV or shut down my computer, and you cease to exist. Once I am done with you, I go back to the real world until I want you to entertain me again.

I don't care that you think BP executives deserve the death penalty. I don't care what you think about the environment. I don't care if you believe fracking is bad. I don't care if you call for more gun control. I don't care if you believe in catastrophic human-induced global warming. And I could care less that you supported Hillary for President. Get back into your bubble. I'll let you know when I'm in the mood for something pretty or scary or funny.

And one other thing. What was with all this "I'll leave the country if Donald Trump wins"? Don't you know how stupid that made you sound? What did you think my reaction was going to be? I better not vote for Trump or we'll lose Whoopi Goldberg? Al Sharpton? Amy Schumer? Leave. I don't care! And don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out. Oh by the way, is Clinton returning any of the money you so generously donated to her election?

Make me laugh. Make me cry. Even scare me. But realize this, the only words of yours that matter are scripted — just like your pathetic little lives. I may agree with some of you from time to time, but in the final analysis, it doesn't matter. In my world, you exist solely for my entertainment. So, just be quiet, and dance, monkey, DANCE!
Best regards
Tom Hansen
1976 42' GBC #482
"Schatzi"
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Postby Sangraal » Tue Jan 24, 2017 6:32 pm

Great letter!
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Postby Marin Faure » Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:18 am

As a drama major in college (technical theatre and directing) and as a working member of the media for several decades (commercial television production and then as a marketing film/video producer/director in the aerospace industry) my initial opinion of actors often mirrored the opinions expressed in the letter.

It did not take me long to learn that this blanket condemnation was ignorant and said more about my inability to see the value in an individual than it did about their value.

As cliche-ish as this sounds, actors, celebrity or not, are people, too. And as people, they react to the same things everyone else reacts to. They have opinions about these things, just like everyone else does.

Has fame, wealth, and public adoration gone to their heads and blown their opinons of themselves far out of proportion? Absolutely, in many cases. But a lot of them have as rational a view of reality as people outside the media. Some I have worked with-- Bill Christopher (Father Mulcahy on MASH) and Jimmy McArthur (Danno on Hawaii Five-O, for example)-- were humble, thoughtful individuals whose positions on issues of the day were based on facts and core values that any American would do well to emulate.

Are the actors most prominent in the news and social media worth the staggering amounts of money they make? Not in my view. But when viewed in the context of the money involved in this industry, the income of the actors pales in comparison.

Sure, one can think of them as "nothing more than entertainers". And while the value of this can be made to seem trite and silly when compared to professons that have great importance and impact on our lives, it's good to keep in mind where the actors' perceived celebrity power comes from. It comes from the people who elevate them to these heights by attaching this status to them. In other words, it comes from people like you, me and everyone else who cough up the $15 or $20 or more bucks for a movie ticket and who bestow on them the bigger-than-life persona and attributes they portray in their roles.

One could write a similar letter about sports figures. In some ways they are an even better target than entertainers. These are people who are paid staggering amounts of money because they can throw, hit and catch a ball and run fast. We hang on their every word and assign them tremendous status simply because they have perfected physical skills possessed by every ten year old kid.

A quarterback, a guy who's good a handing or passing a ball to someone else, sits out the national anthem before a game and suddenly becomes a celebrity. Do you agree with his reasons for doing what he did? Do you disagree with them? It doesn't matter to me, but it does matter than it made you think. The fact I feel the person who made you think is a twit whose sole contribution to society at the moment is the fact that he can hand or throw a ball to someone else doesn't diminish the value of your thinking about an important issue. Thinking that may inspire action that may have an impact on the issue.

We may not agree with the actress who yells her opinions about the current president or about social issues, opinions we may be vehemently against. But to assume she is too ignorant of a person to be voicing this opinion is mistake.

I have worked with actors who had to portray a person in a profession they knew nothing about who put a huge effort into learning what it was like to be a person in that profession. The result was that they probably knew more about the "realities" of that profession than 99 percent of the world's population.

Do they all do this? Absolutely not. But the ones that do gain the ability to portray their character in a way that educates the viewer and makes them think. Actors do it with visual action and expression. Done well, the result is an emotional and intellectual impact on the audience. Authors do it with the creative manipulation of words. Done well, the result is an emotional and intellectual impact on the reader.

Taking the position that what "celebrities" have to say on issues is trite and they should stick to playing the roles that are written for them is an ignorant position to take. It is no more accurate or truthful than saying Trump supporters are all uneducated, ignorant, bigoted mouth-breathers. The fact that a lot of people believe this does not make it an accurate position, does it?

The letter-writer's obsession with telling us that he doesn't care about what celebrites have to say tells me a lot more about the letter-writer than it does about celebrities.
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Postby Tom H » Thu Jan 26, 2017 11:23 am

As you stated, your “initial opinion of actors often mirrored the opinions expressed in the letter” but that apparently changed over time as I presume you met “more rational” actors and/or sport figures. My opinion has not changed, in fact it has been reinforced by recent efforts by prominent actors to destroy President Trump. Major actors threatening to leave the country, television adds demanding that the electoral college representatives vote against the choice made by the voters they represent, stating that blacks are being kept in chains, stating that the White House should be blown up, and the list goes on. The Oscars is not a great place for a political diatribe.
It is the very fact that these people are famous and to one degree or another have a bully pulpit that they should be responsible citizens. Like it or not, they are the face of Hollywood and it is not pretty. With respect to the football player who disrespects his country he has the right to do this on his own time but not while on the job collecting those millions that, as you said, we are paying. The movie stars, sports stars and such are entitled to their opinion, but they're not entitled to spout it off in a public forum just because they have the stage at that moment.
Where are the Bill Christophers’ and Jimmy McArthurs’, those humble, thoughtful individuals whose positions on issues of the day were based on facts and core values that any American would do well to emulate? The silent minority? The actors obsession with telling us that President Trump is not their President tells me a lot more about the actors than it does about the letter writer. :D
Best regards

Tom Hansen

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Postby Marin Faure » Thu Jan 26, 2017 12:59 pm

Tom H wrote:It is the very fact that these people are famous and to one degree or another have a bully pulpit that they should be responsible citizens.


The only way I see to interpret your comment is that as long as an individual, celebrity or otherwise, expresses views that agree with your own they are "acting responsibly." However if they express views that are contrary to yours they are acting irresponsibly. Because if Beyoncé were up there saying what a fabulous guy Trump was you'd be just fine with that no matter what the venue.🙂

I take the position that people can say what they want to say whenever they want to say it. It's just words. I like to think that I have sufficient confidence in my upbringing, education, global experience, and moral code to decide for myself if I want to agree, disagree, think more about, or tune out what other people are saying. I don't need to define borders that determine when it's appropriate to express an opinion and when it isn't.

If actors want to use the Oscar ceremony as an opportunity to spout off about some pet peeve, I have choices. I can put up with it. I can agree it's a good way to try to raise awareness on some issue. I can not like it and so not watch. I can tune out the lectures I don't like and pay attention to the stuff I am interested in. And so on.

If the Oscar committee decides opinion speeches are inappropriate they can forbid them. It's their show. If they decide not to crack down on them then fine, the celebraties can say what they want.

I think Trump is an ignorant, immature bozo and every time he presses send on his Tweets he digs his hole even deeper. Even my dog recognizes the guy is a pathological liar obsessed with nothing but his own ego and image. And the world is rapidly coming to the same conclusion as it prepares to move forward leaving Trump, and by default the US, in the dust as witness the preparations for bypassing the US in economic development and growth. My beef is with the man himself, who I feel is incompetent for the job of dog catcher (my dog agrees with that, too), not with many of the conservative values that have been expressed over time on this forum by people like Bob Lowe and others.

What I have just written is my opinion and while I believe the principles this country was founded on give me the right to express my opinion it also gives everyone else the right to disagree or go farther and express their opposing opinions just as strongly and just as freely in any venue they feel will be effective. Whether a particular venue is appropriate or not is a matter of opinion. I happen to think it isn't for the reasons I've stated.

As to the relationship between a person's wealth, status, power and popularity and the validity of their opinions, I don't think there is one. If someone chooses to agree with something Beyoncé says, that's on them, not Beyoncé. If someone feels that Beyonce's star status somehow gives her more credibility than the mailman, who's making that choice? Not Beyoncé.
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Postby Tom H » Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:11 pm

Wow, that’s the only way you can interpret my comment? I actually agree with most of your position, i.e., “people can say what they want to say whenever they want to say it.” I say mostly because there are situations where “just words” can be dangerous, e.g., yelling fire in a crowded theatre, etc. What I am trying to get across, and obviously not succeeding, is with great success comes great responsibility. Inciting to riot or to blow up the White House is irresponsible to most rational human beings. Have they the right to say it? Sure. Have you the right to call our sitting President an ignorant, immature bozo and a pathological liar obsessed with nothing but his own ego and image? Sure. That kind of rhetoric only serves to solidify the right, and after all they won. A little civility and good manners from all parties would also be a nice change.
Let us have a discussion regarding President Trump in four years when he has had a chance to fix some things, not when he has been President less than a week. We may never see eye to eye when it comes to politics but we do have a GB in common. Safe and happy boating. :D :D :D
Best regards

Tom Hansen

1976 42' GBC #482

"Schatzi"
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Postby Marin Faure » Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:49 pm

Well, the right didn't actually win in terms of votes but it did win in terms of the electoral system which is the only system that counts.

I totally agree with your statement that with great success comes great responsibility, but like almost everything it's not a one-size-fits all statement. The movie theatre example you gave in your last post is a good illustration of where the statement fits. The examples given in the letter to celebrities, on the other hand, illustrate an instance where I believe the statement is irrelevant.

Beyoncé can stand on a box in Times Square and holler out her views and everybody passing by will think she's just another angry citizen. Or she can stand on a stage on national TV and holler the exact same thing. Either way, she's just an angry citizen and it's just her opinion. Nobody is the worse for wear by her hollering it. As opposed to your example of shouting fire in a movie theatre.

Which is why I think the "letter to celebrities" is rubbish. Sure, he (or she) had the right to write and post it. No harm done. It's just one person's opinion. And it's obvious this person hasn't a clue about the true nature of the people being written about. He or she is simply hyping stereotypes to make a point. And while the letter writer doesn't care what a bunch of celebrities have to say-- and frankly, for the most part neither do I-- I wonder if he or she is aware that over 65 million Americans probably don't give a hoot in hell about what he or she has to say, either?

On the plus side the letter provided my dog another opportunity to argue his longstanding opinion that humans are one of the silliest life forms on the planet. I keep trying to talk him out of it but current events are making it an almost impossible task.🙂
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