Media-Generated Celebrities

Some people try to be celebrities. Other people have celebrity status thrust upon them by the media.

Charla Nash had it thrust upon her in the form of a 200 pound chimpanzee named Travis that ate her face. The news got a hold of the 9-1-1 call which is absolutely horrific and terrifying and out of some sense of moral obligation, a public need, they played the 9-1-1 call relentlessly.

Which is the responsibility of the news to let the public know. The public needs to know of impending danger. An incoming typhoon, a gunman on the loose, or perhaps brazen primates are eating the faces of suburban housewives, so they played the 9-1-1 call over and over and over until Charla Nash was an American celebrity. She even has security guards to prevent the public from taking photos.

Kyle Maynard was a kid who was a high school wrestler. He made the news because he happens to be born without arms or legs. Again, it is a very pressing need for the news to make us aware of these things. The points is he gets on the news and now he’s a celebrity who’s mixed martial arts.

Not very well. He’s had one fight, and he’s pummeled as expected. How can you ever look good punching this kid repeatedly in front of an audience? They packaged these stories as human interest stories. It used to be that if you are born without limbs or a primate ate your face, you could go and make a decent living still on the freak show circuit, a carnival sideshow attraction.

At some point they decided that was insensitive, so now they put them in the talk shows. like the one by Oprah Winfrey, who’s the P.T. Barnum of the new millennium, and instead of a freak show they call it an inspirational story.

“Next on Oprah, the woman whose face was eaten by a monkey.”

She’s exploited exactly the same way, only now Oprah gets the two bits that she should have gotten paid. They play harpsichord music coming in and out of the piece and they say it’s a triumph of the human spirit and Oprah lifts the woman’s veil to show her poorly reconstructed face and dabs the woman’s tears where her eyeballs are used to be located.

That’s not inspirational. What is that going to inspire me to do? “O shit if she can get her face eaten by a monkey and still go on Oprah, shit I should get up and sweep off that patio! I’m inspired!”

No. That will just make me scared of leaving the house.


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