I’m back with a long overdue post. Part of that is because I’ve been away in South Africa for the past month or so, visiting family and friends. But that’s not the point of today’s post.
Today’s post is an important one, and I’m feeling kind of daunted about where I should start, just because the topic is so hugely current, and it’s… well, it’s scary. So let’s start with one of the most recent news headlines: Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s divorce. We’ve all heard that Depp’s behavior has been violent at home and in his personal life, which has led Heard to file for a divorce. Countless die-hard Depp fans are accusing Heard for being a gold digger and just doing it for the money and the fame… but is she really?
Domestic violence is a big problem, and it is not dealt with enough. And when it is dealt with, it’s not always dealt in the right way. In the case of Depp and Heard, the things people have said about Heard highlight how easy it is to dismiss domestic abuse just because one of them is a much loved Hollywood actor. I mean, I’m not saying that I know all the ins and outs of their relationship, but I’m not going to be so closed minded and say that Heard is the only one in the wrong. Personally I don’t think she’s in the wrong, but that’s just my opinion. I also still believe that Depp is an incredibly talented actor, and I will probably watch films of his in the future (depending if I like the look of them), but since this news has come out, my admiration for him as declined somewhat.
But the reason I wanted to talk about this today, is because fame can hide so much of a real person. We only see so much of these celebrities that we adore, and although it feels like we know so much about them through chat shows and interviews… the person they present to the public is only a shell of their true self. Let’s look at a few more examples. One of the most hated people at the moment is Brock Turner- you know, that rapist who raped an unconscious girl behind a bin, and then did not serve the adequate time in jail for a rapist, and then was let out ridiculously early, because he’s only a rapist. Okay, I know, it’s because his dad is super rich and is worried about his son’s reputation because apparently he’s alright at swimming… SERIOUSLY. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE WORLD? Brock Turner is a rapist and just because he has some form of high social status, means that he doesn’t have to serve the correct sentence in prison. This is completely unfair.
Then we have people like Bill Cosby and Jimmy Savile. They are slightly different cases to each other: one sexually assaulted women, and the other abused vulnerable children. HOWEVER, both of them got away with their actions for a significant amount of time, because of their fame. In Cosby’s case, women started coming out and telling the truth about him, but were silenced because Cosby is super rich and famous and is able to hire the best lawyers in the country. In Savile’s case, because he was such a big name in the BBC, the BBC didn’t want the public to know about what was going on behind the scenes, even when people complained. Savile died a few years ago, but that was when people who were violated against really came forward and the whole story came out. Jimmy Savile had a show called “Jim’ll Fix It”, where he helped ill children do something really cool. The point of the show was that the children would write into the show, and then one of them would be chosen for each episode. Although at the time it seemed like the coolest thing to be on, there was clearly a lot being kept secret backstage. It’s disgusting behavior.
So that raises the question: why should celebrities be let off so easily? Why is it that sometimes they are made to be seen as the “good guy”, when their actions suggest the opposite? And why is it that institutions like the BBC are so worried about their reputations, that they won’t sort out the problem? It’s all very complicated, but again; why is it complicated? Violation of innocent people’s human rights are happening far too often, and a lot of the time it’s “okay” because “that person is famous” and they were probably just “having a bad day”, or they “drank too much, and it’s the alcohol’s fault”. Remember the whole Oscar Pistorius case, where he killed his girlfriend, but he was adamant that he believed it was a burglar… It’s crazy that he thought he could get away with that story, when he was known to have anger issues, and wasn’t it weird that he didn’t check to see if his girlfriend was asleep in the bed first (for her own protection), before “blindly” shooting at the bathroom door? Hmm…
If you want to read any more articles on any of the people mentioned above, I will leave some links below. What are your thoughts? Why are so many celebrities being let off so easily?