05 Apr OUTRAGE ? – Collective disgust in the face of celebrity or high profile shame is the lifeblood of our mainstream news
Collective disgust in the face of a celebrity or high profile shame is the lifeblood of our mainstream news. Controversy excites the masses and nothing mobilizes us quicker as a populous than having the opportunity to either debate scandal, or collectively point the finger. Television and social media also play their part, picking and choosing who deserves the benefit of the doubt, who is beyond repentance, highlighting and brushing aside aspects of a situation to establish their own self-serving narrative. There’s an unwritten code of conduct, moral condemnation is only applicable to those we choose not to like; it is very easy to make every excuse possible for someone’s abhorrent behaviour as their perched on a pedestal as a national hero, darling, treasure etc.
Jamie Carragher (left) and Ant McPartlin (Right) Pictured in the acts which has cast both into public shame
Jamie Carragher’s recent indiscretion was deservedly met with great vitriol by the national press and many spectators of Premier League football on Sky Sports. Many felt because also this incident resulting in Jamie spitting on his motorway troll’s daughter. Whilst Jamie’s actions were certainly abhorrent and will receive no defence from myself; I do believe this is an example of when the public’s anger is with the individual who made the mistake, to heighten oneself own sense of morality and self-indulgence.
Jamie Carragher seen pictured across various tabloids after his ‘spitting incident’
On the other hand television-presenting, royalty Ant McPartlin was praised for his bravery after re-checking himself into a rehab after a three-car collision wreckage resulted in injuries to a three-year-old girl. Ant was subsequently charged with drink driving, and I am sure there isn’t a person in the UK who does not only hope for his speedy recovery, and that he can face what ever demons he has and come out the other side a better man. However, this does not make the constant press mentions of bravery and courage any less mystifying. The narrative here is a story of recovery and redemption totally sweeping aside the seriousness of his actions. Ant could’ve endeared or even killed himself or any innocent bystanders as he went on his booze-filled cruise down in South London.
Anthony “Ant” McPartlin (left) and Declan “Dec” Donnelly (right)
And what about Chris Brown? The new poster boy for domestic violence and crimes against women. Again, Chris Brown’s past issues with domestic violence are nothing short of repugnant and deplorable. Chris Brown’s 2009 incident with Rihanna where he was charged for assaulting the singer; has followed him his whole career; now casual followers of pop culture are more in the know about his troubles with the law, and a mistake he made when he was 19 years old, as to his music.
Is this fair? It could be argued the nature of Chris Brown’s crime is so egregious it would be asinine to separate the man from the music. But if so, we must be consistent. As a populous, we overlook different musicians character all the time.
Chris Brown in court facing charges of assault against his girlfriend of the time Rihanna in 2009.
R.Kelly is a known child sex offender (although never convicted), Eric Clapton held racist political views and John Lennon was an abusive husband and father. Lennon, whose legendary career earned him universal acclaim an airport in his hometown Liverpool, was not shy flaunting about his treatment of females.
He admitted to hitting “any woman” and further explains, “ That is why I am always on about peace, you see. It is the most violent people who always go for love and peace.”
In no way am I suggesting that his legacy should be dragged through the mud because of his mistakes in life. However, what I’m advocating is fairness, and not for us to cherry pick when we want to play the ‘morality police’.