That’s Acting

I am always shocked when I remember that Charlton Heston, the star of two of the most liberal movies ever made, the original Planet of the Apes and Soylent Green, went on to become the poster child for what I believe to be the most conservative, warped and corrupt organization in America: The National Rifle Association. I mean, how do you promote one belief system and yet espouse another? I wouldn’t be able to do it.

Bill Cosby also springs to mind. On screen he was the quintessential family man. That was his brand. But in reality he was a sexual predator. The moral tension between what you do and who you are in these situations must be exhausting, unless you’re a psychopath.

But actors aren’t the only ones who act. Diplomats definitely have to do it, as do politicians, if they hope for any type of occupational success. Lawyers, too, along with every director of a human resource department on the face of the earth.

How do you people sleep at night? I would be up at all hours, trying to reconcile the dichotomy of my life. I can’t even stand it when someone within my orbit behaves like that. I can’t abide fake people. I think they’re evil.

Unfortunately, we need diplomats and politicians and lawyers and personnel directors. I suppose I should be happy that there are people out there who are willing to act. I would hate to take on those dirty jobs myself.

So, if you are devoid of integrity, never fear. There’s a place in this crazy world for you, too.

Charleton Heston

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Feeling Fraught about Kevin Spacey

Sex scandals abound these days, it seems. It feels so much worse to me when it’s someone whose work I always admired, like Kevin Spacey, Bill Cosby, or Woody Allen. I had built these men up to such heights in my mind, I almost take it personally that they knocked themselves off my pedestals in such warped and heinous ways.

It could be argued that it’s not their problem that I erected those pedestals. They’re only human, after all. But on the other hand, they didn’t hesitate to enjoy the fruits of their fame, and along with that comes a certain amount of responsibility. And I really don’t think “don’t be a pervert” is too much to ask of anyone. I mean, I manage to follow that rule. Mostly. Fair’s fair.

But there’s another layer of complexity with Kevin Spacey, because he decided to pick this scandalous moment in time to come out as being gay. I mean, we all knew it already, didn’t we? It always kind of made me sad that he didn’t come out publicly much earlier, before it was forced out of him like some sort of awful confession. As a public figure, being that obviously closeted kind of sent a message that being gay is something to be ashamed of. I know it’s a career risk, because society is still stupid that way, but I honestly think that he was loved enough that he’d have survived it. It’s his business, of course, but he is a role model. I don’t want gay kids today (or any other day, for that matter) to feel shame for being who they are.

And as far as his dalliances with underage boys and his groping of people who did not welcome such behavior, he has pretty much admitted to all of that. Clearly he has a problem. But coming out as gay at this moment in time kind of makes it sound like he thinks that that’s the source of the problem. I have no idea whether he genuinely feels that way, but the timing of all of this makes me sad. I know plenty of gay people who don’t prey on children or put their hands in places where they’re not wanted.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

I will never be able to watch the Cosby Show with the same level of joy again. Actually, I doubt I’ll ever be able to watch it, full stop, as I doubt anyone will ever have the courage to air it again. And that’s a pity, because that’s like throwing out the baby with the bathwater. The Cosby Show taught me what a functional family looked like. Future generations won’t have the pleasure of seeing that.

And I haven’t been able to watch a Woody Allen movie in ages without it feeling tainted. I always kind of feel like I need to shower in bleach afterward. That’s never fun.

Here’s what I fear will happen whenever I see Kevin Spacey’s amazing talent now: He has played so many convincingly creepy bad guys that I can fully imagine what that anonymous guy must have felt, after having spurned Kevin’s attentions earlier in the evening, only to wake up to find Kevin lying on top of him, probably staring at him with those intense eyes. Personally, I’d have screamed. It’s the stuff of nightmares.

Thanks for that image, Kevin. Thanks loads.

Kevin Spacey

The Hefner Spin

Jeez, Hef is barely cold, and he’s already being immortalized. I just heard something on NPR, for chrissake, that said that his magazine sparked the sexual revolution. I almost choked on my M&Ms.

Okay, I’ll concede this much: His magazine made sex an open topic for discussion. His magazine normalized nudity. And sometimes, at its pinnacle, before it became the joke that it now is, it really did have good articles. Really.

But this spin that he liberated women? Omigod. Where to begin.

Playboy bunnies are seen as great successes by those who are into that stuff, but not for their brains, honey. Not for their achievements or their societal contributions. Not for any other reason than making the decision to shuck off their clothes in their early 20’s, as if the choices one makes at that age are consistently rational. Gimme a break. If anything, that liberated them to become objects.

You never hear anyone talk about the fact that his magazine helped perpetuate the body shaming that still exists to this day. Very few of us can live up to the standards that his Barbie dolls set. Even fewer of us are in our early 20’s. I actually had to give up on internet dating sites because the men my age are looking for skinny young women. You might be an old sleaze, but that doesn’t make you Hugh Hefner, buddy. Get real.

And by the way, who owned the damned mansion? Not the women whose flesh gave Hugh Hefner so much profit. He might have let some of them live there, and gave them allowances in exchange for unprotected sex, but the fortune and the control was all his. Don’t you think otherwise for a second. And by the way, if they didn’t give him or his friends sex, they didn’t get that “allowance.” That’s not prostitution… how?

The fact that so many women were willing to sleep with this creepy, dried-up 91 year old weasel in exchange for his handouts does not elevate them in anyone’s eyes. That they’d humiliate themselves by dressing up like rabbits (the ultimate breeding machines, lest we forget), does not make them pillars of the community. The fact that they were expected to entertain a revolving door of sleazy celebrities like Bill Cosby and Charlie Sheen should not, I hope, make them the subject of envy. I strongly suspect that none of them have won the Nobel Prize.

I’ve got to admit though, the dude was rife for parody. A friend of mine posted on Facebook, “Hugh Hefner died. I guess he’ll Miss October.” That did make me laugh.

1024px-Hefner2006

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Okay, I Can’t Stand It.

A dear friend, whom I love and respect, posted the following on her Facebook page. It broke my heart that someone I care about and admire so much could be so taken in. I’ll start with the quote (Which is from some other source, which has since disappeared from Facebook, and I’ll remain faithful to the spelling errors, screwed up punctuation, and all), and then I’ll respond, point by ignorant point.

This saddens me. I’m a woman and a human first, so obviously I’m against rape, sexual assaults, molestation, etc. However, there is much more to this story that a lot of you wont even understand. I don’t even believe that in this day and time ppl brains even expand as far as this situation really goes. The reality is this man ‪#‎BILLCOSBY was getting ready to take over a huge television network called ‪#‎NBC. Which would have open doors for ppl of color to be on a major television station much more often. He’s was speaking on positive opportunities in the black community, on race issues and things he believed black ppl should do to get ahead. Then and ONLY then did these outlandish accusations from 30… THIRTY YEARS AGO come out about him. One by one. When a black man is “getting too big for his bridges” Hollywood, white America has to stop him. Now he’s been indicted on charges for something allegedly happen 10 years ago. This 78, lets just say 80. This 80 year old man is now in prison on a 1 million dollar bail for extremely old UNPROVEN accusations. When he should be home preparing to die, because let’s just face it, he’s gonna die soon and now instead of dying for being one of the greatest of all time! For being a positive successful huge black public figure, he now has to die with this stigma on him as a serial rapist. Same thing they did to Michael Jackson. The craziest part is that they don’t even have to try hard because black ppl doing the dirty work for them. Working against their own. Believing the hype. Black men, comedians, etc making jokes and accusing Bill. Black Women going against him don’t even know the facts or wether it’s even true. Just running w/accusations. Think about this ‪#‎StephenCollins the father off “Seventh Heaven” was accused of and admitted to CHILD MOLESTATION and no one is talking about it. The show also airs faithfully on television still. That’s what you call ‪#‎whiteprivilege. As long as black men are selling drugs and encouraging black ppl to do drugs and disrespecting our women and things like that they are ok with you. The minute you try to spread positivity into your black community and make major moves BE CAREFUL.

  • There is much more to this story that a lot of you wont even understand. I don’t even believe that in this day and time ppl brains even expand as far as this situation really goes.

If you want to have people take you seriously, you might want to avoid insulting them with your condescension right out of the gate. But then, I guess I’m doing that, aren’t I?

Guess when Mr Cosby was attempting to do that? 1992. So if your conspiracy theory holds water, it sure took a long time to get up and running.

  • He’s was speaking on positive opportunities in the black community, on race issues and things he believed black ppl should do to get ahead.

He said poor blacks all buy their kids $500 shoes. He also said “Those people are not Africans. They don’t know a damned thing about Africa. With names like Shaniqua, Shaligua, Mohammed and all that crap and all of them are in jail.”

He was also the main spokesperson for Jello for many years. Jello is owned by R. J. Reynolds, a tobacco company that targets its menthol cigarette advertising to the black community. Menthol allows you to draw smoke deeper into your lungs, increasing your chances of cancer.

  • Then and ONLY then did these outlandish accusations from 30… THIRTY YEARS AGO come out about him. One by one.

And? Is there a statute of limitation on morality? If he got away with it for this long, is he somehow absolved of his sins?

  • When a black man is “getting too big for his bridges” Hollywood, white America has to stop him.

Uh… the expression is “Too big for his britches,” you fool. And if that’s the case, why hasn’t anyone “stopped” Sydney Portier, Morgan Freeman, Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy, Denzel Washington, Danny Glover, Samuel L. Jackson, James Earl Jones, and on and on and on…

  • Now he’s been indicted on charges for something allegedly happen 10 years ago. This 78, lets just say 80. This 80 year old man is now in prison on a 1 million dollar bail for extremely old UNPROVEN accusations.

Is there an age limit for morality? Do you get to get away with shit because you’re old? And on an initial arrest, the charges are ALWAYS unproven. That’s what trials are for.

  • He now has to die with this stigma on him as a serial rapist. Same thing they did to Michael Jackson.

Michael Jackson was another pervert. You wear the chains you forge in life. Sorry to disappoint.

  • The craziest part is that they don’t even have to try hard because black ppl doing the dirty work for them. Working against their own. Believing the hype. Black men, comedians, etc making jokes and accusing Bill. Black Women going against him don’t even know the facts or wether it’s even true. Just running w/accusations.

Um, do YOU know the facts? And are you supposed to unquestioningly support everyone within your race? That must be exhausting.

  • Think about this ‪#‎StephenCollins the father off “Seventh Heaven” was accused of and admitted to CHILD MOLESTATION and no one is talking about it. The show also airs faithfully on television still. That’s what you call ‪#‎whiteprivilege.

No, that’s what you call, “Who the hell is Stephen Collins”? I’ve never heard of the man. I’ve never seen the show. He’s not nearly as famous, so not as many people are talking about him. And a Google search tells me there were 3 women, not more than fifty, and he admitted to it, instead of trying to deny, so while it’s still heinous, it’s less “interesting” to the media.

Did white privilege save Bill Clinton from the Monica Lewinsky scandal?

  • As long as black men are selling drugs and encouraging black ppl to do drugs and disrespecting our women and things like that they are ok with you. The minute you try to spread positivity into your black community and make major moves BE CAREFUL.

Tell that to Oprah, honey.

God, sometimes I just want to scream. Racial bias goes both ways.

conspiracy

Why Are We Shocked?

As more and more women come forward with rape allegations, it’s becoming increasingly impossible to maintain any warm and fuzzy feelings for Bill Cosby, America’s favorite dad. There’s nothing worse than having an icon fall from grace, but there you have it. It happens all the time. Not only are none of us perfect, but quite a few of us are, frankly, despicable.

And Mr. Cosby certainly isn’t helping his case by showing not only an utter lack of remorse, but a litigious response to the scandal. But that shouldn’t shock us, either. This is a pattern that most scumbags follow until the pressure becomes too great. That’s why I never take remorse seriously. It’s rarely a natural and sincere reaction.

And then you have the Honey Boo Boo scandal. There is a reason I never watched that slow motion train wreck of a show. But to hear the allegations that her mother is dating the man who sexually abused this child’s older sister makes me sick. But again, why are we shocked? A certain percentage of mothers are horrible. They put their own misplaced desire for love ahead of the welfare of their children every single time. It has been forever thus.

We’d like to think that the human race is civilized. No one wants to believe that the veil between us and violence is wispy thin. We want to maintain that illusion of morality and decency. But rape and abuse happen. As a matter of fact, I haven’t known a single female who hasn’t been abused, either physically, sexually or emotionally, at least once. The actual chaos in which we live is obvious if we only care to acknowledge it.

On some level, we all know that. And yet no matter how often we see human beings behave deplorably, we can’t quite seem to get used to it. I kind of wish we would, though. As sad as it would be if the entire world became more cynical, I think we would be more apt to take appropriate action if our utter shock did not dull the edge of our outrage.

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[Image credit: jakkijelene.com]

I Wish I Were a Huxtable

I am hardly one to describe the perfect marriage. I appear to be terminally single, and heaven knows I’ve never witnessed a perfect marriage outside of television. But if I ever were lucky enough to be in a good marriage, I’d want it to be just like that of Clair and Cliff Huxtable on The Cosby Show.

Watching them over the years I’ve seen several aspects of that relationship that appeal to me greatly. First and foremost they saw the humor in life and didn’t take themselves too seriously. That is priceless. If you can be playful in your relationship, you can get through anything.

Another excellent quality is that they had a healthy balance of power. Neither was subordinate to the other. They were a team, and they supported each other.

Equally precious is the fact that they made an effort for each other. They’d go out of their way to do special things. And they clearly still had chemistry.

Okay, so life isn’t a situation comedy. I get that. But The Cosby Show demonstrated what a functional family might look like if ever one were possible. It’s a high bar by which to measure one’s relationships, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

Huxtables-2