By Thomas Sheremetta
Nothing is better than coming home from a long day of schoolwork and winding down. Some people use this free time for social media, YouTube, video games, and television. We use these forms of entertainment as a way to clear our mind from our real-life affairs. These affairs can include triumphs, hardships, and everything in between. Another affair we must deal with on a daily basis, whether we like it or not, is the conversations of modern politics.
However, by no means should we be forced to listen to our very own entertainment figures spew their opinions at us. Even the most passionate activists need time away from politics. When celebrities use their entertainment platforms as a tool to voice their opinions, they alienate any viewers that disagree with them, which is not good for their image. During an awards show or late night sketch, you are speaking to the masses. But, believe it or not, those masses didn’t flip on the channel to see you preach your views.
Since the 2016 presidential election, there has been a call to action to voice your opinion on any public platform possible. Whether it be talk shows, award shows, or sports events, it is likely that someone will get political (we’re looking at you, Colbert and Noah and Kimmel…). Due to this constant insertion of politics in inappropriate environments, viewers have been deciding to tune out the nonsense plastered on their screen. The question is whether these part-time activists will figure out the damage they are doing to their careers.
First, let us establish that not only do viewers disagree with hearing the point of views of celebrities on public platforms, but other celebrities also disagree with it. Celebrities such as Billy Joel, Mark Wahlberg, and Kevin Hart all understand that it is not their place to speak politics.At least they are putting their viewers first, rather than possibly alienating them. However, these celebrities become overshadowed by the “woke” ones.
Like I stated before, viewership is dropping on shows that are not intended to be political. Let’s start off with the most recent awards show, the Emmys. Put aside the people running the show this year, such as the chair and treasurer who happened to be Hillary supporters that donated to her campaign. Also, put aside that the “The Sexual Spectrum” episode of Bill Nye Saves the World was nominated for outstanding writing. By the way, watch the video of the song that aired on this episode. It’s not only far from outstanding writing, it’s downright uncomfortable. Even with Stephen Colbert as host, they couldn’t stop the train wreck from happening. The number of viewers for the 2017 Emmy Awards was at 11.38 million viewers, tied for its previous all-time low. It’s no surprise since celebrities treated the show as a shooting range towards Donald Trump. We’ll have to see if it continues to decrease because of this liberal bias in the upcoming years. We’ll also have to see if rewards shows return to being about awards.
Next, let’s discuss late night shows. I think most of us can agree that the main reasons for these night shows are for celebrity interviews and comedic entertainment. However, they have also joined the whirlwind of politics. Maybe they’ve forgotten, but you’re supposed to be funny, not spew opinions on modern day events like a “news” show. It tends to show where they stand on politics since none of these late-night hosts have a large Republican viewership. Breitbart writes that “a THR poll showed Colbert’s audience is only 17 percent Republican, as opposed to 33 percent for Kimmel and 31 percent for Fallon.” As you can see, they seem to not care since they pander to the majority of their audience on politics. However, Stephen Colbert really bit the bullet when he took over for Letterman and moved from the 3rd highest viewed late night show to the 4th. Someone should try to tell Colbert that trying to appeal to young liberals doesn’t work out well since they’re not his major demographic. But, I’m sure they’ll continue to involve themselves with politics because our public is so fascinated by the uneducated opinions of people living on Cloud Nine.
Finally, the worst thing about all of this goes beyond the ratings. The main issue is that these celebrities just don’t know what they’re talking about. They make these generic statements that you would see on a Facebook comment thread and yet, people can’t get enough of it. There are celebrities that have literally called for the death of President Donald Trump and no one on the left bats an eye (Johnny Depp and Madonna, for example. And Kathy Griffin if you’d forgotten). I thought most logical people would not care at all what celebrities say but that’s not the case in modern-day America. For example, Jimmy Kimmel has gotten a lot of kudos for his monologues on healthcare and the recent Las Vegas shooting. It’s very easy to trend on YouTube when you pander to viewers that don’t need facts to believe in something. Kimmel is not fooling everyone else, and I wouldn’t be surprised if people caught onto his game. Let’s not forget that all his talking points for his healthcare crusade were fed to him by Chuck Schumer, without considering the point of view of any Republicans. The fact that a show initially made for comedy decides to engage in politics and only considers one side of said politics is a bit concerning to me.
The way entertainment is shifting in our world is frustrating. Whether you agree with the politics they speak of or not, we don’t watch these forms of entertainment to be lectured on political issues. We need to remember that these are two different entities. A celebrity should entertain the masses, and a news channel should discuss politics.
Cover image from here