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It seems to me that we have a tendency, in this country, to turn everything into a circus. We can't seem to do anything without a lot of noise and motion and spangly costumes. Our elections are a circus for sure, with lots of clowns that keep pouring out of the clown car endlessly with their painted mask faces and obvious tricks. I don't like clowns and this circus seems to have way too many of them.
Other countries seem to be able to do things without requiring 3 rings and a band. Take same sex marriage, for instance. It has been legal in Denmark since 1989 and I really don't recall it being a giant media event with people carrying on or threatening to set themselves on fire or anything. Almost all of Europe and Canada have passed similar legislation back in the beginning of the century without making a huge dramatic thing out of the business. Well, except for maybe France, but they kind of make a big dramatic thing out of everything. Most of the countries of the world just passed legislation and got on with their lives and more pressing problems, like working on climate change and renewable energy, and saving the planet. You know, stuff that doesn't make the front pages of magazines in grocery store lines.
Why is it we feel it necessary to turn absolutely everything into some Las Vegas show? I truly don't understand this aspect of our culture at all. We seem to have entirely rejected restraint as a thing worth practicing at all and we seem intent upon doing whatever horrific thing possible to make the show bigger and more spectacular. This philosophy appears to apply to absolutely everything we do and we can't seem to do anything without turning it into some kind of penny dreadful novel. We have to have dastardly villains, anti-heroes, plucky heroines, dubious high priests, sacrificial lambs, judas goats, hoards of peasants with torches storming castles, and clowns. Lots of clowns. Sometimes there is so much smoke and so many mirrors that it is impossible to see anything with any real meaning. If you look really closely all you will see is that the spangly costumes are torn and tawdry and the clowns are sweating so much that the makeup on their fake faces is running. In the meantime, all the people who are really pulling the strings are hidden in the back, manipulating everything like the puppet masters that they are.
It has been all over the news and everything else recently that a famous guy, who is famous for reasons I can't personally fathom, has now become a famous woman, for reasons which are equally obscure. Personally, I don't care about this because it has always been my personal philosophy that people should go ahead and be whatever they are so long as it doesn't hurt anyone else in any real way. Whatever he or she is and what he or she does about it has no relevance in my world and I don't worry that some male celebrity who brings nothing of value to the world has decided to become some female celebrity who brings nothing of value to the world or that it signals the apocalypse of moral decay. The fact that anyone actually cares what some useless celebrity does is far more an indication of moral decay in my book. The thing that bothers me is that the media and public seems to want to make some sort of courageous hero out of him/her. Really? Unless gender change can turn someone into a far better human being, I don't get it.
This person was not an icon of evolved humanity as a man and probably isn't going to be any more of an upstanding human being as a woman. Why must we make a hero out of a person who as a man, was a shallow, greedy, self-involved person who was a dreadful father to his first family, neglected his children, and hurt and damaged them terribly because he could never get over himself? As far as I'm concerned he was just one more bad father in a world that has too many of them. If we are going to make someone into a hero, how about the father of that little Pakistani girl who was shot in the face for wanting to go to school? Here is a man who fought to provide his daughter with rights in a culture that dictated that he deny them to her and every other girl. He had to face down an entire society of people in order to be a father to his child, supporting and encouraging her to not back down and doing everything he could to protect her and make her dreams possible. He faced not only censure from others, he faced the possibility of violence and death. This is a man with courage. This is a man who is a hero and you will never see his face on a magazine while you wait to buy your groceries. Not just because he isn't part of the circus and no one cares, and not only because he wouldn't want to have his face everywhere all the time, but mostly, because he isn't a clown.
How hard is it to do something outrageous when you have made a career out of it and your goal has always been to be famous, be in the spotlight, get lots of attention, and make lots of money? As long as there is an audience who wants to go to the circus, they will do whatever it takes to stay in the center ring.
Send in the clowns. The public can't get enough of them.
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