Stop Telling Celebrities To "Just Do Their Job"

Stop Telling Celebrities To "Just Do Their Job"

This is their America too!
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Whenever an actor moves the audience with a stunning monologue everyone applauds because they are doing their job. Whenever an athlete makes the game-winning touchdown or shots a 3 pointer with 10 seconds on the clock, everyone jumps to their feet with cheer... because it's their job. Whenever a singer or musician sing/play a note that touches the listener's core, that listener will be overcome with positive emotion because that singer/musician was doing "their job".

However, when a celebrity in any category speaks out about the racism, sexism, police brutality, unfair treatment of the LGBTQIA community, or *cough, cough* unfit presidents... They are told to stick to what they know or stay in their place.

Newsflash... being a celebrity does not take away a person's humanity, citizenship or voice. Just because they are in the limelight doesn't mean they are now somehow only allowed to speak when you tell them to and to say what's written for them. They are just like every other American citizen who sees the state that this country is in and wants to speak up. America is their place, just as much as it is yours.

Celebrities have every right to voice their opinions or silently protest. Why is it that a hate group can protest and the "president" reminds us that some of them are good; but when athletes kneel in solidarity and silently protest they are considered un-American. I think the real problem is everyone has their own opinion of what it means to be an American and it usually has to fit in with their own actions and if it does not, well the person opposing them must be bad and unpatriotic.

But what can be unpatriotic about protesting? About challenging the system because you feel something is wrong with it? About calling out people who are unfair and one-sided and vain, and saying you will not stand for the injustice... so instead you'll kneel. What is unpatriotic about that? This country was formed out of protest. Out of wanting to be free from a tyrannous dictator who treated his subjects unfairly. The first amendment of the Constitution gives every citizen, even the celebrities, the right to free speech, free press and yes to protest. People love to whine about free speech when they are yelling "Send them back to Mexico" or "GOD hates gays"; whenever it's a bad, evil, or negative thing that people want to scream and they are shut down, they complain about how they have the right to free speech. But let a Meryl Streep speak out about corrupt politics at an award ceremony, she wakes up to tweets about how she isn't even a great actress. Or let a Colin Kaepernick kneel for the national anthem not because he hates America, but because he is tired of the ill-treatment of individuals of color in America. People who can be shot and killed while their murderer walks and then are called criminals after their death. And yet he ostracized made to feel like he is in the wrong.

This treatment of celebrities has to stop (I mean along with all the injustices in America today). They are not monkeys that are gonna dance when you tell them to, to the song you choose, for as long as you care to watch. They are individuals with a talent and a platform. In fact, any celebrity that uses their platform to speak up and out is actually doing their "job". If you have an influence on people and you don't use it, what good is it for? Some celebrities use their influence in negative ways, they promote violence, drugs, and abuse towards women and sometimes these are not even the lifestyles they live. But a athlete who isn't afraid to make a statement. An actor who isn't afraid to take a stand. A celebrity who uses their elevated voice to help evoke change and movement towards a better America... Well I can't think of anything more patriotic than that.

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Today's food for thought:

Think about someone other than yourself today...
Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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An Open Letter to the Person Who Still Uses the "R Word"

Your negative associations are slowly poisoning the true meaning of an incredibly beautiful, exclusive word.
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What do you mean you didn't “mean it like that?" You said it.

People don't say things just for the hell of it. It has one definition. Merriam-Webster defines it as, "To be less advanced in mental, physical or social development than is usual for one's age."

So, when you were “retarded drunk" this past weekend, as you claim, were you diagnosed with a physical or mental disability?

When you called your friend “retarded," did you realize that you were actually falsely labeling them as handicapped?

Don't correct yourself with words like “stupid," “dumb," or “ignorant." when I call you out. Sharpen your vocabulary a little more and broaden your horizons, because I promise you that if people with disabilities could banish that word forever, they would.

Especially when people associate it with drunks, bad decisions, idiotic statements, their enemies and other meaningless issues. Oh trust me, they are way more than that.

I'm not quite sure if you have had your eyes opened as to what a disabled person is capable of, but let me go ahead and lay it out there for you. My best friend has Down Syndrome, and when I tell people that their initial reaction is, “Oh that is so nice of you! You are so selfless to hang out with her."

Well, thanks for the compliment, but she is a person. A living, breathing, normal girl who has feelings, friends, thousands of abilities, knowledge, and compassion out the wazoo.

She listens better than anyone I know, she gets more excited to see me than anyone I know, and she works harder at her hobbies, school, work, and sports than anyone I know. She attends a private school, is a member of the swim team, has won multiple events in the Special Olympics, is in the school choir, and could quite possibly be the most popular girl at her school!

So yes, I would love to take your compliment, but please realize that most people who are labeled as “disabled" are actually more “able" than normal people. I hang out with her because she is one of the people who has so effortlessly taught me simplicity, gratitude, strength, faith, passion, love, genuine happiness and so much more.

Speaking for the people who cannot defend themselves: choose a new word.

The trend has gone out of style, just like smoking cigarettes or not wearing your seat belt. It is poisonous, it is ignorant, and it is low class.

As I explained above, most people with disabilities are actually more capable than a normal human because of their advantageous ways of making peoples' days and unknowingly changing lives. Hang out with a handicapped person, even if it is just for a day. I can one hundred percent guarantee you will bite your tongue next time you go to use the term out of context.

Hopefully you at least think of my friend, who in my book is a hero, a champion and an overcomer. Don't use the “R Word". You are way too good for that. Stand up and correct someone today.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlin Murray

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My Catholic School Would Never Do What The Covington Catholic #MAGAteens Did

I went to Catholic school since preschool and even with divided political beliefs, I have faith no one would have acted this way.

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I went to Catholic school my whole life. From preschool through high school.

The high school I went to definitely had divided political beliefs, but we embraced it. Instead of having a divide, we came together with clubs supporting voter registration and activism in your party of choice. We had a civics course and government course that required us to volunteer for campaigns.

On the religious side of things, we were required to complete service hours and it encouraged us to make change, learn about different cultures, and become involved. Throughout my time at Catholic school, I never was targetted by my race, political beliefs, or my view on religion.

It was not until I went to college outside of California that I started seeing changes in how people react to diversity. I am proud to have been raised in an environment that would have shut down and owned up to any severe or harmful actions their students would take.

In the era of a racial and political divide, it is important to remember the values that you were taught. Especially, when you involve religion.

The most important lesson I learned from Catholic school is to love your neighbor as yourself.

We are more similar than we are different. Especially in a melting pot like America. Become educated and aware before you target a group of people, who have not harmed you.

We can all learn a lot from the way Nathan Phillips handled the situation and we should all be alarmed about who was targetting him: the youth, the next generation.

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