By James Hirsen, Special for USDR
Chris Brown, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, and a host of other young celebrities have been making headlines lately, but not necessarily for the reasons one might hope. A segment of the celebrity youth has been setting an example that is anything but stellar for millions of impressionable followers who look up to them.
Brown, who has had a number of platinum-plus chart topping hits, is possibly most famous for pleading guilty to the charge of felony assault of singer and ex-girlfriend Rihanna. He ultimately received a sentence of five years probation and six months community service.
Over the years Brown has been given plenty of opportunities by fans and the system alike to adjust his course. However, in a recent turn of events the Grammy winning artist was placed under arrest after having been kicked out of a rehab facility for violating the establishment’s “internal rules.” The influential pop star, who incidentally has 13.4 million Twitter followers, is now being held without bail at a Los Angeles County jail facility.
Meanwhile Bieber, who is a top money earner in the pop music field and second most popular celebrity on Twitter (having approximately 50 million followers), has been on the covers of tabloids that are filled with detailed descriptions of his reprehensible behavior. The singer has been accused of assaulting paparazzi. He has also reportedly been involved in numerous clashes with his Calabasas, California neighbors, including a widely reported egging incident that resulted in a local police raid of Bieber’s home. Since that time Bieber is said to have disposed of his last property in Los Angeles and is reportedly making a permanent move to Atlanta.
He was previously arrested in Miami Beach after a police officer allegedly caught him drag racing a loaner Lamborghini on a residential street. In a recent leaked video of a deposition in a lawsuit in which Bieber is involved, the young celebrity appears to be arrogant, condescending, and disrespectful. The civil case accuses Bieber of ordering his bodyguard to attack a photographer.
In another high profile illustration, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is one of the top pop divas in the entertainment world. Her influence is enormous, having had singles that are some of the best-selling tunes in the world. Gaga lays claim to more than 41 million Twitter followers. She also recently engaged in a performance at the annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, which seems to have hit a new low, even for Gaga.
Obviously, it is getting increasingly difficult for pop stars to out-shock one another.
Gaga may have done it, though. She chose to use an approach that was seemingly intended to make everyone feel queasy.
At a strategic point in her show, she donned a white apron and announced that her next song would be “Swine.” While she sang, another woman came on the stage clad in a provocative black skirt, portions of her upper anatomy hidden by strategically placed electrical tape.
The second woman was the supposedly renowned British performance artist, Millie Brown. Brown proceeded to vomit a bright green liquid all over Gaga. The two women then mounted what looked to be a mechanical bull, but the device had apparently been fashioned into a mechanical pig. A neon sign flashed the message “Lady Gaga’s Haus of Swine BBQ.” Gaga lay on top of the moving mechanical swine as Brown straddled her and simulated sexual relations; this took place as Brown simultaneously stuck her fingers down her own throat to induce more vomiting and projected the regurgitation onto the star singer.
The above described actions are a sampling of what passes today as entertainment, conduct that is not only degrading of our culture but also has a potentially corrosive effect on the bodies, minds, and souls of those who take in the negative imagery.
How will the deterioration of our entertainment standards be reversed? In a paraphrase of Edmund Burke, all that is necessary for the culture to change for the better is for good people to start saying something.