by Mark Angelides
There seems to be a new form of protest emerging that is as self serving as it is ugly. Instead of being a genuine expression of concern, motivated by the desire to effect change, this new form of protesting seems to be nothing more than virtue signaling and a desperate grab for exposure. And non are more guilty of this than those in Hollywood’s movie industry.
The right to protest is one that has made the US a great nation. The very country was founded upon a protest and it has a long and noble history of protests that have made us better people. But when protesting is merely a process to further our careers and let the world know how “special” we are, it diminishes the very act of protest to the detriment of us all.
One of the more overt displays of this was award winning actress Meryl Streep at the Golden Globes, where she said:
“There was one performance this year that stunned me. It sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good. It was that moment when the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter.”
On the surface this seems pretty straight forward, but let’s look at the truth of it. Donald Trump did make fun of a disabled reporter, yes, but he did not make fun of his disability. The flailing, groveling gesture that Donald Trump displayed to mock was not of the reporter’s disability. Not only did he use the same mocking gestures to tease Ted Cruz, in fact, the gesture was in no way similar to the reporter’s actual disability!
Do we live in a society where people should be coddled and treated differently because of one facet of themselves? I hope not. Do we want to be judged and treated differently from others because of a physical characteristic? Myself and a certain Martin Luther King don’t think so.
Do people with disabilities want said disability to be the only part of them that we see? Of course not! All people should be treated equally no matter what, and that includes the good as well as the bad.
What happened here was a calculated move by the media to try and make The Donald lose votes (it failed). And Hollywood celebrities jumping on the bandwagon shows that they don’t really care about facts at all, they just want the folks at home to think they’re “swell people”. Making false or ill thought out statements supporting this or defying that does not make you a good person. It makes you a sheep desperate for public approval.
By all means, let’s call out injustice when we see it, let’s protest when we have firmly held beliefs, but let’s not diminish the noble act of protest by spreading lies for our own personal agendas.
by Mark Angelides