Category Archives: entertainment

BreakPoint: Who Cares How Taylor Swift Votes? Our Silly Obsession with Pop Stars’ Politics

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I never thought in my wildest dreams I’d talk about Taylor Swift on BreakPoint. Just look what you made me do.

It’s not exactly a secret where the entertainment industry stands on conservative politics, especially President Trump. With few exceptions, this president has only intensified the full opposition by actors, producers, singers, and performers of all stripes to the GOP. But one pop singer—the world’s most successful pop singer, in fact—has remained strangely quiet.

A recent editorial in The Guardian called Taylor Swift an “envoy for [Donald] Trump’s values,” not because she’s ever expressed public support for the president, but because she hasn’t said much of anything about him at all. Swift, you see, isn’t much for politics. She hasn’t joined other entertainers in denouncing Trump with sufficient enthusiasm. And so that’s gotten her in trouble.

Her critic in The Guardian writes that “[Swift’s] silence is striking, highlighting the parallels between the singer and the president: their adept use of social media to foster a diehard support base; their solipsism; their laser focus on the bottom line; their support among the ‘alt-right.’”

This is just the latest in a drumbeat of demands that the 27-year-old singer take a side in this current political scrum. Some have gone much further, suggesting that she’s a secret admirer not only of President Trump, but of the less savory among his supporters. Reports surfaced last year that Neo-Nazis and other racist groups have adopted the tall, blonde pop artist as an unofficial mascot. Some even called her an “Aryan goddess,” and claim that she has secret Nazi sympathies—a charge she has flatly denied.

Still, with no college education and no political experience, this young woman is expected—purely because of her fame—to tell her millions of fans not only how to vote, but which side of the political aisle are the good guys and which are the bad.

Swift, for her part, has consistently refused. “I chose to do music,” she’s said before. Last year before the election, Swift clarified, “I don’t talk about politics because it might influence other people. And I don’t think that I know enough yet in life to be telling other people who to vote for.”

Well, good for her!

But the burning question through all of this is why on earth we should care about Taylor Swift’s political views! It’s ridiculous that so many people are obsessed with getting celebrities to take sides on candidates and policies. But we’ve got to move beyond this.

First, celebrities aren’t specially endowed with insights into good government. They have the right to express their views like everyone else. But the idea that somehow what they say matters more—well that just proves Neil Postman was right, we are amused to death.

So our celebrities have become our experts and our heroes. That’s a bad idea.

Also this unrealistic expectation of celebrities reveals our culture’s terrible spiritual thirst. Particularly its lack of religious and moral authority. Celebrities are, for too many, the closest things we have to gods.  They are idols, pure and simple.

But there’s still another, and yet more practical reason why setting our political and social compasses by the opinions of entertainers is a bad idea: It poisons entertainment itself. There must be a space that exists outside of politics if our culture is to remain sane—a place where we can set aside our debates and just live together as human beings.

I’m no fan of most pop music, but we do need cultural places where we can live together civilly in our society that are not dominated by political rancor. If everything becomes just another place for a party power struggle, we’ll stop seeing each other first as friends, neighbors and fellow citizens, and only look at one another instead as members of opposing armies.

If we can’t figure out a better source for political insights than Taylor Swift or the other celebrities that we already pay too much attention to, we’re in trouble, trouble, trouble. See what I did there?!

 

Who Cares How Taylor Swift Votes?: Our Silly Obsession with Pop Stars’ Politics

As John has pointed out, our culture’s obsession with celebrities betrays a spiritual hunger that only Christ can quench. Why not talk about that, winsomely, in one of your conversations with family, friends, or neighbors?

 

 

Resources

The Case for Civility: And Why Our Future Depends on It

  • Os Guinness | HarperOne Publishers | January 2008
Time for Truth: Living Free in a World of Lies, Hype & Spin

  • Os Guinness | Baker Books | February 2002
Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

  • Neil Postman | Penguin Books Publisher | December 2005
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Christmas film favorites

 

Nov. 27-Dec. 1
Christmas Film Favorites
by Todd Kappelman, read by Dr. Ray Bohlin
Nov. 27 A Christmas Carol Listen Online
Nov. 28 Miracle on 34th Street Listen Online
Nov. 29 How the Grinch Stole Christmas Listen Online
Nov. 30 It’s a Wonderful Life Listen Online
Dec. 1 A Charlie Brown Christmas Listen Online
Right-click to download the whole week as a single mp3 Podcast

This time the good guys won

On Wednesday night last week I had the privilege of serving as guest conductor of Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. It was particularly sweet because of the efforts by many who worked against me. Members of the orchestra and Santa Monica political…

( Read the rest of this commentary, or listen to it right here.)

The case for Christ

Audio

Glen Campbell is in heaven, Barbara Cook we don’t know about. Where are you going ?

TWO FRIENDS OF MINE DIED ON TUESDAY. GLEN CAMPBELL WAS AN AMAZING MAN. STILL IS, BECAUSE HE IS IN HEAVEN WITH THE LORD HE KNEW. GLEN SPOKE AT OUR MEDIA DINNER IN WASHINGTON A FEW YEARS AGO. HE WAS OPEN AND HONEST ABOUT HIS STRUGGLES WITH ALCOHOL AND DRUGS BEFORE THE LORD SAVED HIM. HIS WIFE, KIM, IS A RADIANT BELIEVER WHO WAS INSTRUMENTAL IN HIS COMING TO CHRIST. MANY OF GLEN’S SONGS HAVE BECOME CLASSICS IN COUNTRY WESTERN AND POP MUSIC.

( Read the rest of the above commentary here or listen to the audio.)

Kim Kardashian Seeks Womb

Not that you were keeping up with the Kardashians, but… For the Colson Center, I’m John Stonestreet with The Point.

I’ve talked before about the ethical problems of surrogacy. The idea of renting a womb turns motherhood and birth into commercial transactions. And it turns children into a kind of product over which adults have a right.

That culturally-embedded narcissism is evident in reality star Kim Kardashian West. She has a uterine condition that makes pregnancy painful, but still wants more kids. So, reports People magazine, Kim plans to hire a surrogate, or possibly ask her sister, Khloe, to carry her baby.

Now notice how adoption isn’t even on the table here. The attitude is, we want more biological kids so we have a right to more biological kids. The end justifies any means necessary to bring them into the world. In the case of surrogacy, those means include a commercial transaction that treats women like factories and children like products, and usually includes discarded embryos.

Not that we have to tell ourselves not to imitate Kim Kardashian but…let’s not imitate Kim Kardashian.

Middle school dance

 

 

In recent years the popularity of high school Show Choir competitions have sky rocketed in popularity but now middle school students are getting in on the action.( More )

Trump not welcome on Ellen DeGeneres’ show

I think it is time those in political office, and those seeking office in our nation stop going on TV shows which ask important questions like what kind of underwear do you use.

At the same time I think Ellen would love it if Clinton had won the election, and wanted to be on her show. Ellen like most TV folks are out of touch with everyday American who voted for Trump.
People who are tired of having their values like marriage should be between a man, and woman.At one time we were told by the left we just needed to allow things which goes against our values. Today we are told we must embrace things like same sex marriage,and abortion. Even worst our tax money should pay for things we don’t agree with.
I am sure President Trump has more important things to worry about than Ellen not inviting him, on her show.
It might be a good idea for everyday Americans to turn her show off, and focus on the important things.
Here is the story about Ellen not wanting to have Trump on her show.

Harvey Weinstein fights R rating for trans teen film

NEW YORK (AP) — Harvey Weinstein knows he can be temperamental, and he knows he’s not above a good publicity stunt, but he said Thursday his complaints over an R rating for his company’s upcoming trans teen family story 3 Generations are worth the effort on behalf of prospective young trans viewers.
( More )

The Recipient TV show ( tired of TV trash check it out )

If you are tired of trash on TV you might want to check out this pilot TV show that Jeff Saxton is producing. You can find out more about the show here.

Cal Thomas has said,and written too often we just protest the bad. Cal thinks we should also support the good. You might want to check out this TV. show.
I know the man who is producing it. He is s a man of high values.
Jeff Saxton has written books on issues which we must all give thought to. I am sure he is putting the same work ethic into this show.