Wednesday, September 16, 2009

"Jackass of the Month" race too close to call


It seems some ABC news employees who were listening in on a conversation between President Obama and CNBC’s John Harwood before the start of an interview tweeted that Obama had some unkind words for Kanye West. For those who missed it, West mounted the stage at last weekend’s MTV Video Music Awards and commandeered the microphone from pop-country teen star Taylor Swift, who had just won the award for “Best Female Video.” West proclaimed to the crowd that Beyonce Knowles, not Swift, should have won the award. Well, it appears the president has the same opinion of West as most other people. On the audio feed that was listened in on by the ABC folks, Obama is asked why West would do what he did. Replied the president, “He’s a jackass.” Couldn’t have put it better myself. There’s been some debate about whether Obama’s remarks should have been reported, or shared on Twitter. But it’s really a tempest in a teapot. The real issue is the growing number of jackasses we encounter in our daily lives. Never in American history have people been as rude as they are today. Other recent examples are good old Joe Wilson and Serena Williams, who let loose with a threatening, F-bomb-laden tirade against a line judge a few days ago at the U.S. Open. Wilson and Williams have not been serial offenders, but it’s not the first time that West has climbed on an awards show stage to make his displeasure known. And has anybody else noticed that Kanye only complains when it’s a white person winning an award? Bill Maher said recently that we’re becoming a nation of stupid people (It’s getting harder and harder to dispute that.). It seems we’re also becoming a nation of really rude, angry people. Not a good combination.

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12 Comments:

Blogger PRIguy said...

This is from today's Richmond Times-Dispatch on this topic: "Everett L. Worthington, a professor of psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University, suggested that the stress that goes along with public life factors prominently in such meltdowns." He also said, "We say things short and to the point now, and we don't worry about the niceties of manners and protocol."

If you ask me, this is total BS. I'm sick of people giving a pass to these people.

Manners absolutely are decaying! And people like Worthington are part of the problem. He’s giving these rude, ignorant, narcissistic jerks a free pass to say and do what they want to anyone because of pressure, Twitter or whatever. I’m tired of reading about idiots like baseball star Manny Ramirez being excused for being a total a**hole by saying, “That’s just Manny being Manny.“ No it’s not. It’s Manny being a a**hole. Others are excused by being labeled “outspoken.“ That’s another crock that dismisses people for being a loudmouth clod in situations where at least a touch of decorum should exist.

“We say things short and to the point now…“ says Worthington. Perhaps if we taught our children the proper way to write a concise sentence we could make a point in just a few words. But anymore, people are too lazy to even use the shift key to capitalize a word or use proper punctuation.

This destruction of manners is only going to get worse. We’ve got two generations of children who soon will be in the business world. None of them have been told “no.“ None of them have had to deal with losing at anything. Very few of them have actually had to earn anything because mommy and daddy have handed them everything in the interest of being “good parents. This rudeness thing is only going to bet worse. I’m glad I’ll be long gone from this world when that happens.

September 16, 2009 at 12:58 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

Back in the 70s at the height of the women's movement, I read a nifty little piece about the way society was changing and one man's outlook on it: The man opened the front door of an office building for a woman. She said, "You don't have to open the door for me just because I'm a woman." He said, "I didn't. I opened it for you because I'm a gentleman."

I keep that story in mind even now. I still open doors for people (not just women), I let people in front of me when I'm in line if they have a few items or a restless child, I just try to treat people the way I want to be treated. We've lost that for the most part.

September 16, 2009 at 1:04 PM  
Blogger MJ said...

Kanye West is just another entertainer over-estimating his importance to society.

September 16, 2009 at 2:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Civility must have bad health care insurance, because it's dying a slow, lingering, painful death. I'm fine with people having their own opinions. I'm fine with people voicing them. I'm not fine with people whose opinions differ from mine calling me every name in the book because I don't agree with them. Sometimes, I am not willing to be persuaded, and I don't understand why people can't live with that fact.

I'm also tired of the sense of entitlement people have, which apparently extends to the right to act like an ass whenever and wherever they please -- in church, at the mall, at football games, at public gatherings, in Congress.

THere are not too many excuses for behaving like an ass. I have a friend whose ex-wife routinely threw things at him and screamed at the top of her lungs. Her defense: "I'm Italian!" Why do I think that if she'd have neen Norwegian, she'd have been just the same? The power of understatement has been lost and may never be rediscovered.

September 16, 2009 at 2:21 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

One needs to look no further than a simple church service of any denomination to see what's become of our civility. When people need to be told not to use a cell phone in church, well, that sums it up.

I used to tell people that the decline of our society began many years ago with the invention of the self-flushing toilet.

September 16, 2009 at 6:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the Serena Williams incident is the most disgusting because she passed up two opportunities to apologize for her third-grade behavior at the U.S. Open. The first was at the post-match interview and the second came a day later in the doubles event she was in.

But there she was on ABC's morning show doing a Patsy Cliner ("I'm sorry. So sorry.") I turned the TV to another channel. She was only there because her handlers made her go. Maybe she was afraid of losing some product endorsement. But as far as I'm concerned, the apology was worthless at that point.

Also, Kanye West has accomplished at least one thing. He got the president of the United States of America to call him a "Jackass." I bet his mom is real proud, huh?

September 16, 2009 at 8:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So far the "Jackass of the Month" is Bob Casey for his stupid vote in the Senate to continue funding ACORN! 83 votes against and only 7 votes for, it's clear to me that Bob (marshmallow mouth) Casey is out of his frggin mind! SHAME ON THIS NIT-WIT!
Mr. West is of no importance to the real issues we face these days!
Ron W

September 17, 2009 at 9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem isn't with what Kanye West said so much as the with the importance we place on him. Who cares what any celebrity thinks just because they are celebrity?

September 17, 2009 at 10:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Civility, or lack thereof, has found its way across all walks. Yes, these entertainers and those in the sports entertainment business, have their own issues. They are just too full of themselves to be civil. Before the other day, I've never heard of this guy West, but suddenly he makes a name for himself. I have no idea who he is, what he does (or think he does), why he does it, or where he does it. And, I don't even understand the context of the remarks. I don't know the show, never watched it, never will. But, enough of the snippet of his actions have been played to see his stupidity.

But, the run-of-the-mill citizen (sorry I can't define) has also taken up the cause. We see it in road rage, shopping lines, theaters, and other public places.

Part of the problem could stem from Internet, especially the blogosphere and other such posting forums. Why? People have become faceless. I believe that many will write harsh things on a blog, that would never think of telling another person face-to-face. FACELESS, that is, without a person, or personality, behind the writing. Sometimes, being faceless is good. It takes out the personality and emotion, and lets the writing stand on content. But, it breeds contempt, disrespect, and never establishes relationship. Hiding behind the keyboard is easy, whereas defending conversation is difficult.

September 17, 2009 at 8:20 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

Kanye West is a singer with an ego the size of a boxcar. I don't know if the guy has a lick of talent or not. I've never heard a thing by him.

I know about him solely from his outbursts at these awards shows. See, he thinks that he deserves Song of the Year, Video of the Year, Best this and Best that...yet he never, ever wins. So he began complaining after each of these functions that he should have won whatever award he thought he should have gotten.

His episode the other night was a twist on his usual whiny outbursts in that he thought Beyonce should have won. At least she had some class. Anyway, that's why this whole thing was such a hot topic; his hissy fits are almost as much a part of these shows as is an opening monologue.

I hope that helps your assessment of things. In short, he's an a** and a spoiled baby.

September 18, 2009 at 7:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks PRIguy for the description. I feared that I might be missing something important, but your descriptions and explanations help me understand that I don't miss anything by ignoring this part of the culture world.

Aren't big egos and big-time entertainment integrally related? Perhaps this is why I will continue to ignore.

September 18, 2009 at 10:07 PM  
Anonymous A Mom said...

There has been Jackasses in society in the past, but one that stands out in particular, and has become an official Jackass - The award goes to KANYE WEST!!. The picture of him holding a bottle of booze in one hand is so UNCOOL. Betcha mom is looking down on him with disguise.

October 1, 2009 at 8:42 AM  

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