Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Do I Care?

Lots going on in the world this week so I’ve taken some time to wonder “do I care”? Let’s find out, shall we?

David Letterman had “relations” with several staffers, none of whom were married. He was. Do I care? No. It’s his private life—as well as Mrs. Letterman’s and his young son’s—but really, does it matter to any of us? Do I care about the mea culpas and whether they were genuine, funny, sarcastic, or smarmy?

Not a whit.

Here’s the thing—if we find out that Letterman sexually harassed any of these women, women who worked for him, then we have a different kettle of fish to fry. (And yes, I’m the queen of mixed metaphors.) My “do I care” will turn to “I most certainly do care” in a heartbeat. Because using your power to manipulate those in a subordinate position to you is certainly a crime. Having an affair while involved with someone else—while reprehensible in my book—is not. The extortion plot? Also a crime. But Letterman’s dalliances are not my business and I would rather not hear about them anymore. Go back to stupid pet tricks, Dave. Or in your case, stupid human tricks.

Crime is crime, but bad moral character is just that. And I just don’t care if my 11:30 pm talk show host guy is a philandering s.o.b.

Roman Polanski was extradicted from France after thirty years on the lam for raping a thirteen-year-old girl after plying her with champagne and Qualuudes. Do I care? You betcha. As a woman, a mother, and a person living in a society where children should matter more than they do, this event tips the scales a little more toward goodness. She was not a consenting participant in this event no matter what Mr. Polanski—or his apologists, too many to even believe—have to say on the matter.

There’s a reason that the person holding the scales of justice is a woman. I hope Mr. Polanski is as frightened as his victim presumably once was. About this I care deeply.

Jon Gosselin has suspended taping of “Jon and Kate Plus Eight.” Do I care? No, siree. Well, let’s amend that; maybe I do care if only because now those poor, innocent children will finally be able to live their collective lives off camera. Maybe something positive did come out of this after all.

I’m thinking that this post makes me sound angrier than I intend but when I realized that I had to wade through several articles on the Letterman issue in the newspaper this morning—as well as the details as to whether Polanski will ever make it here to stand trial—to find out what really was going on in the world, I got my panties in a twist so to speak. And when I saw yet another celebrity come out in support of Roman Polanski, I got a little more irate. And when I saw the Gosselins on television yet again, I was near stroke. I want to know what’s going on in the world at large, the global community, and my world. And no, I don’t mean what Michelle Obama wore overseas to try to secure the Olympics for Chicago (which I kind of care about because that woman—same age as I—really rocks the shift dress). I mean what our government is doing (or not doing, as the case may be), how our troops are faring overseas, how close we are to figuring out how to give health care coverage to the majority of citizens in this country. Or how we’re going to help the one in four American families who have had a member experience job loss in the past year. And on the lighter side, who the Mets fired and why, whether Eli will be able to throw on Sunday, and how Mark Sanchez is faring after getting spanked by the Saints. The important stuff. The stuff that matters to me.

So do I care about David Letterman? Not so much.

Roman Polanski? To the extent that if he is found guilty, his butt is fried by both a court of law and the court of public opinion.

The Gosselins? Not at all. Except for eight little children who deserve a childhood.

Your thoughts? What matters to you? And what images or stories are you assaulted with every day that send you over the edge?

Maggie Barbieri

3 comments:

  1. I definitely agree with you about Polanski, what a snake.

    As for the others, I get really tired of celebs airing their dirty laundry and then trying to tell us what we ought to be doing and thinking. Give me a break!

    My thinking though is people like to know that the "important" people get into trouble too.

    Marilyn

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  2. Honestly, I'm torn about Letterman. He confessed all because of the extortion attempt, so he cared a lot about his money and the justice of THAT. Not so much about his wife and the sanctity of their marriage. I don't care about him, per say, but it is a sad statement (one of MANY) about our society and what we value.

    Same with Polanski. Same with Bill Clinton, Ted Kennedy, John Edwards (not to pick on Democrats...I'm sure there are Republicans, too, I just can't think of any right now!)...oh! Mark Mcquire, Barry Bonds... We are somehow willing to excuse behaviors of people we like for other reasons, but it's providing a moral gap in our children, and in how we all view each other and what's excusable.

    So, yes, I do care because of the messages these people are sending through their behaviors. It makes it so hard to guide our own children (and selves) when we have skewed morality playing out in front of us. I'd rather it be kept behind closed doors, to be sure, and totally agree with you on the need for justice and accountability. We all need to see that we can't get away with these bad choices, otherwise our perceptions, and those of our kids, really will become skewed, and our tolerance for such things greater.

    Great topic, Maggie!

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  3. Can I just have some REAL news, please? What's going on with our commitments in Vietnam and Iraq? What's going on with our economy? What did that crazy Marmaduke get into today? (Sorry - but I do need my comics fix.)

    I don't CARE what CELEBRITY is doing WHAT with WHOM. I only care about Polanski in the more global terms of his crime and the legal system. I don't even care if Letterman was sexually harassing women. Sorry, but I'm old enough to have lived through days of the boss chasing me around the desk. I learned to run faster - to the next job. And I REALLY don't care about ANY of the reality TV stars.

    Whew! Maybe I should take a chill pill.

    Gayle
    http://gaylecarline.blogspot.com

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