Sunday, August 19, 2012

Cult of Celebrity

Watching the “news” do sports and on the bottom of the screen it scrolls that 3 Americans have been killed in Afghanistan. This is a great example of the cult of celebrity in America when a baseball game or a hockey strike is more news then young men and women losing their lives to protect our country.

Right now we have one political party blaming the financial problems of America on unions and their “over the top pension” . These same politicians who cry that we can not afford to pay retirement for teachers, police and firefighters are the first in line to hand out money to millionaires and billionaires for things like new sports arenas. I read that since 2000 there have been 28 new major sports stadiums built in this country with a total cost of over 9 billion dollars, as much as 5 billion of that was public dollars raised through taxes and fees. Take a minute to read that - we can not afford to keep schools staffed and are laying off first responders to save money and we have given billions of dollars to rich people for their shiny new stadium that a lot of hard working folks can not even afford to use. The best example of this is in Minnesota, when they broke ground on a new stadium paid for with millions in taxpayer dollars a bridge collapsed killing people because they didn’t have the money to make the necessary repairs to keep it safe.

With the NHL threatening to lose another season because they are fighting on how to split up 3 billion dollars and in Pittsburgh we have Mike Wallace sitting out because he things only getting paid 2 million dollars is an insult. I often hear “players careers are short and they could get injured anytime”, I have an argument for that - you are playing a game, those 3 guys who died in Afghanistan would have risk their lives for 70 years to make the money you think you are to good for. A rookie or average player makes as much sitting on the bench of most major sports teams as it would take a soldier, teacher, or first responder at least 5 years to make.

Next time you watch a war movie remember that guy on screen is making 100 to 1,000 times as much as a real soldier and he doesn’t even do his own stunts. These people aren’t bad, they get what someone will pay them but for gods sake please stop using the short career or might get injured excuse for why you are holding out for more money, it all comes down to greed.

I’m not saying celebrities or sports stars are bad, they provide a service and keep people entertained even during hard times. I’m just saying maybe instead of having role models with the title CEO, All Star, Super Bowl Champion or MVP maybe it’s time for role models with the title Private 1st class, Deputy or Fire Chief.

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