Emboldened at the Golden Globes

It is not an act of love for celebrities at the Golden Globe Awards to plead for (earthquake-related) contributions to Haiti. It is appreciated and laudable, but it is not an act of love. Rather, it is an act of indifference and ignorance. Meaning, LOVE would address the $2 a day earned in Haitian sweatshops 365 days a year ad infinitum, not be limited to melodramatic, self-serving gestures embodied in misguided Red Cross efforts straight out of Central Casting.

— a struggling actor, unloved by the Entertainment industry

I’m glad that no one set off an explosion at the Golden Globes Award Show on Sunday (1/17/10). Imagine what the broad consequences might have been, aside from the humanitarian horror that we would have witnessed.

But enough about what lots of people around the world are wanting to do in increasing numbers with each passing day. Let’s focus on why.

Viewers were treated to the sparkle of blood diamonds once again, as — once again — more than one celebrity (upon receiving an award) enthused dramatically about how lucky everyone was who worked in the Film industry. “This is the best job in the world!” was shouted out twice, I believe, to wild applause (or smirking appreciation).

But… did it occur to anyone that that might not be the best PR move for the industry, to be celebrating their elite employment status so at this juncture in history? When so many are without a job at all, or with a gig which is quite a come down from what they were doing or wanted, what they liked or expected.

It’s easy — obviously — to exude compassion (particularly if you’re an actor) over the current crisis in Haiti. To write a check. To point to a non-profit foundation you’ve created or like. However, some of the links provided by Counterpunch the last few days touch upon what’s really needed, what’s really wrong. What that relatively wealthy Golden Globe crowd wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot-pole.

And because they’re not going to, the dramatic resolution in this film is going to be worlds away from the script they’d like us to embrace, the delusion that serves them very well. That enables them to carry on — uninterrupted, for the time being — all the self-congratulatory blah blah, all the spotlighting of how the marvelous Motion Picture industry serves the public beautifully, providing escape and instructive experiences.

They do provide great diversion at times. And they do give so many of us inspiration and insight once in awhile. There are, unquestionably, beautiful elements in their world, the world they share with us… at a price. Many virtually starve to do so, I know. But I’m talking about the movers and shakers in that realm right now. Them and (subliminally) the powers that be (in other realms) who care even less about the horror in Haiti, and who do infinitely more damage to… the vast majority of the world.

But let’s return to our focus on the Motion Picture industry, the small potatoes which have such an enormous influence on us. Who could change our abominable momentum.

There is a huge downside to the Motion Picture industry.

Take Avatar, as a flick which provides just one example. If you glance at one discussion, you’ll find an excellent pro and con rundown, which culminates in a left-oriented basic approval of the film which won Best Picture at the Golden Globes.

Yes, the movie moved masses with its basic put-down of imperial designs which parallel what we’re doing in Iraq… and elsewhere. Yes, good. But no one stood up last night and waxed and waned about how great it was that an anti-imperialist theme was pulling in record $$$.

Rather, we got that kind of schtick for Mo’Nique courtesy of Drew Barrymore, who went absolutely tearful over what the Best Supporting Actress had taught her. Such emotion was reserved for that sort of thing. Tributes to people who some souls couldn’t have done without. You know the speech. You know the drill. [Pause.] What we’ve come to expect. And what they never fail to deliver. Everything and anything short of actually addressing the real world on an ongoing basis, with a life-and-death attitudinal set. Authentic acknowledgment that we’re all complicit in our present day holocausts.

No only glances backward are permitted, usually reserved for The Holocaust… almost exclusively. Sure, exceptions are made from time to time, but their subjects are rarely repeated. Tarantino’s Inglorious Bastards is just one of many — too many — examples of how the Film industry keeps the politically correct stance vis-a-vis The Holocaust alive. How they compound ignorance with ignorance ad infinitum. Of course, The Holocaust took place. It’s just that there are equally abominable atrocities taking place right now… with our general support… and the Film industry’s singular contribution to the blindness and bloodbath (not even counting the diamonds).

Hey, if the King of England or France — at a certain point in history — came forth and said, “Yo’, this is the greatest gig in the world, this Monarchy gig!” … well, he might lose his head losing his head in that way. The slaves in Haiti got rid of their chains for awhile, in fact, back in the day when such an in-your-face attitudinal set was giving out rewards to a select few in Port-au-Prince.

Those celebrities are really quick to thank God for their particular successes, their globes. I don’t see anyone getting up and saying anything about God in relation to the immiserated. “Thank God, we have this kind of job where we can make a difference!”


I say, “Roll ‘em.”

Arnold Pepper can be contacted in his studio at impelus@gmail.com. Read other articles by Arnold.