Friday, December 27, 2013

Uproar Around Celebrity's Opinion Allows Nation to Have Productive, Nuanced Conversation About Serious Issues

Image via Jeffrey Smith
by Ben Howard

As the nation gathered for their respective family Christmas celebrations this week, conversations across the country turned to the outspoken comments of a reality television star. Though various family members inevitably took divergent views regarding this celebrity and his opinions, the nation was unanimous in its gratitude to the reality star for facilitating such rational, healthy conversation about a particularly thorny issue.

“Everyone was able to express their thoughts and beliefs maturely and openly,” said Milwaukee resident Ed Flowers, 56. “Just a few weeks ago, I was worried that the Christmas table would be free of nuanced discussions about difficult issues involving politics, religion, race, and sexual orientation, but thankfully a guy with a beard intervened so we could all share our views with each other.”

Sources report that the sheer outlandishness of the comments made by this reality star along with the continued coverage of the situation from both regular media outlets and through social media venues such as Facebook and Twitter, allowed the nation to take a good long look at the way it had been conducting itself at previous family gatherings.

“In the past when I’d gone to visit my family, I would try to hide my opinions and change the subject whenever the topic turned to something touchy,” recalled Julie Harmon, 27, the token liberal member of her conservative Macon, Georgia-based family. “But thankfully this year, I was able to talk about all of my political opinions with my relatives who disagree with me passionately.”

When asked if the constant conversation about controversial political topics detracted from the festive atmosphere, or whether the time would have been better spent strengthening familial bonds, the nation cocked its head to the side, narrowed its eyes, and said, “I don’t understand.”

Ed Flowers, for one, is looking forward to the next round. “I can’t wait for next year, I’m hoping a football player says something about Israel, or maybe a talk show host will talk about income inequality. It’ll be exciting, I’m sure.” 

Ben Howard is an accidental iconoclast and generally curious individual living in Nashville, Tennessee. He is also the editor-in-chief of On Pop Theology and an avid fan of waving at strangers for no reason. You can follow him on Twitter @BenHoward87. 

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