Friday, August 23, 2013

Internet-Sanctioned Bêtes Noire

There's an amazing tendency on the internet that astonishes me in addition to the rampant incivility and tendencies toward flaming -- it's the unbridled willingness of some people to form herds of hatred toward some inconsequential popular figure that seems to be disproportionate to the alleged offense.  Here's some examples: Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, Barney the purple dinosaur, Miley Cyrus, and Taylor Lautner of Twilight.  Not to mention Fifty Shades of Grey or The Hunger Games.  It's like there's a universally received position that all adopt:  These are officially bêtes noire, and we are all expected to step into line and think so accordingly!

If there are people lurking that deserve that kind of opprobrium, those examples are just not them!  No, these are small fry in the scheme of things.

Let's look at things.   Strangely enough, politics lately generate fewer strong feelings of that kind, other than whoever happens to be President or some other major officeholder.  A few political commentators or opinion-shapers might fall into this circle, such as Rush Limbaugh, Keith Olbermann, or Ann Colter; but most don't draw that magnitude of response.  Likewise, few sports figures do, unless they happen to quit their team and city of location for better deals or places.  As I recall, even some of the certifiable world-class tyrants and scoundrels did not make this category.  Kim Jong-Un might be scary to some, but not like his dad.  Only the former and unlamented Osama Bin-Laden can evoke those emotions.

Probably a lot of this is explainable as due to the exaggeration of impact of voices from the callow, with the lack of any kind of aspiration towards quality.  The Cartesian formula "Je pense, donc je suis" has devolved into "Je parle, donc je suis" (I speak, therefore I am) or perhaps "Je signale sur l'Internet, donc je suis: ("I post on the internet, therefore I am.")   And proportionality or context is often lost in the process.

Barney the Dinosaur was intended for a preschool audience, not for adults.  And the Twilight series was, I presume, was for pre-teen girls: an audience who might not be oriented toward uncompromisingly tough characters as Tommy Lee Jones.  It's bizarre to expect that everything should directly appeal to you!

So, don't get your panties in a knot over the fact that some people like ABBA (Hey, John McCain does), or there are Beibers, or Swifties, or even Nickleback fans.*

Get real!

*Necessary disclaimer:  I am not a Beiber girl, or a Swiftie, or a Nickleback fan!  Glad to clear this up for the record.





 

10 comments:

MarkD60 said...

Except for that purple Barney, nuke him!

TexWisGirl said...

the 'pounce' attacks can be (taylor) swift! :)

Anonymous said...

How many admit to being Nickleback fans?

Mike said...

I'm not a Swiftie but every group or singer has one or more good songs. Otherwise they wouldn't...... well except Bieber! And......

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

I don't see what's the problem with Nickleback. They're just ordinary.

Bilbo said...

I suppose we Parrot Heads are okay?

Bilbo said...

I suppose we Parrot Heads are okay?

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

Parrotheads get agreeably drunk, which proves they know how to cope with life.

eViL pOp TaRt said...

Parrotheads generally don't take themselves seriously and know how to have a good time. Go for it, Bilbo!

Cloudia said...

But Affleck as our holy bat man!!???

GGGRRRRRRRRR!!!


Just KIDDING! (A little morality play dramatizing your wise point)