One of the annoying facts of life is that the world is full of rich people who are willing to offer opinions in public that you and I don’t like.
Remember the Dixie Chicks? Back in 2003, one of group’s talented and rich singers suggested on stage that she was ashamed that then President George W. Bush was from Texas, the band’s home state.
Then there’s David Green, another very rich individual who loudly proclaims he runs his company, Hobby Lobby, on strictly biblical principles. Along the way he’s frequently complained about the anti-biblical evils of morning-after birth control pills and gay marriage.
And there’s wealthy gun rights superstar and former hard-rocker Ted Nugent who has suggested a feminist is just an overweight woman who “doesn’t get it often enough.”
And let’s not forget the wealthy former NFL quarterback and current Nike spokesperson Colin Kaepernick who silently spoke volumes by taking a knee during the national anthem.
No matter what your personal beliefs, be they political, social, or religious, somewhere there’s a rich person who not only enjoys being in the media spotlight but knows how to get there. And he’s saying something that royally ticks you off.
Why in the world do we become so angry when rich and famous people offer an opinion with which we disagree?
Perhaps it’s because we equate money and fame to power, which, to be honest, is often true. This causes us to worry that these rich morons will sway the opinions of all the lesser people around us just by opening their famous mouths. This constitutes a threat to those of us with our own vastly superior intellect.
I have a good friend who suggested when Kaepernick began speaking out that he should just “shut up and throw a football.” David Green has been invited more than once to “shut up and sell glue guns and popsicle sticks.”
I could go on. But the bottom line remains that somehow it all seems so unfair. After all, nobody is going out of their way to report on your political or social or religious opinions. What makes all those rich and famous people such flash-bulb bait?
Well, it’s probably because they’re rich and famous. I don’t know why we’re so attracted to what they have to say, but I’ve noticed that supermarket check-out stands are always well-stocked with magazines about the goings-on of people with more money and power than you and I will ever see.
So what do we do with all these famous people who proudly parade their personal preferences and politics in public?
We boycott them, that’s what.
When Meryl Streep suggests she might not be voting for the reelection of our president in 2020, conservatives call for all right-thinking Americans to boycott Meryl’s movies. When Hobby Lobby CEO David Green suggests that gay marriage is nothing but the legalization of sex perversion, left-thinking Americans urge shoppers to buy their glue guns elsewhere.
Boycotts are how we think we’re going to drive all the various bastards to their knees. Occasionally it works. The Dixie Chicks never really recovered from calling Bush an insult to Texas, and Kaepernick isn’t playing football anymore.
But in the end this is still America, and rich and famous people have as much right to speak out as you do. If you don’t like what they say, fine. Cancel your subscription to People magazine. But telling Kaepernick to shut up and throw a football is about as dumb as me telling a car mechanic to shut up and tighten some screws if I don’t like the explanation of the button on his lapel. I’m not paying him for his political opinions. I’m paying him to fix my car, and if he does a good job I’ll come back again sometime. I couldn’t care less what he does, or thinks, off the clock.
And just so you know, I’m probably going to keep buying those 50%-off picture frames at Hobby Lobby, and I don’t spin the radio dial when Nugent’s “Cat Scratch Fever” comes on the oldies station.
But come November 2020, I will be voting.