Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Too much Foie Gras

Who deserves the attention of our mass media? Our culture is obsessed with freaks and monsters. In particular, we are currently seeing daily the image of a man who is clearly worthy of no fame whatsoever. Here is my current letter published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

Celebrity status goes to wrong crowd

John Mark Karr is a symbol of serious problems in our culture ("Karr won't face charges,", Aug. 29). JonBenet Ramsey herself was a victim because of misguided ideas about celebrity that fueled a psychotic mind.

Our worship and envy of celebrities needs tempering by a more humanistic realization. Even Karr was made into a celebrity by the news media. His status was confirmed as he flew here from Thailand as an elite, drinking champagne. No doubt he'll soon appear on "Oprah."

Instead of putting pretty little girls on a pedestal, instead of glorifying criminals and the criminally insane, we should praise those who make the world a better place: those who work for Habitat for Humanity or fight AIDS or reduce global warming. Extol compassion, not notoriety.

Here's to Jimmy Carter, Larry Kramer, and Al Gore.


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