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Small Talk: Can I Steal You For a Minute?

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56 minutes ago, TheFinalRose said:

Poor Jed. He would have been perfect for this show. Instead he's the resident Bachelor Nation villain.   

We need a forum!


You can request a forum for it, or start a thread in the "Other Competitive Reality Shows" section.

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  • 1 year later...

Last night I saw a commercial for “Joe Millionaire”! After like 20 years, it’s back, baby! If you haven’t seen the show, it was a take-off of when The Bachelor actually had desirable leads, like the wealthy Andrew Firestone. So this show had the ladies competing for this “millionaire” that was actually a somewhat dim construction worker. And at the end, when the truth was revealed, the winner had to decide whether she actually loved him or took a cash prize. The twist this time is that there are two bachelors as leads, and presumably one is actually a millionaire and the other isn’t. To say I can’t wait for this show is an understatement. I didn’t see when it premieres, but it’s on Fox.

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  • 1 year later...

This probably isn't the best place for this, but I can't find anywhere better and I don't have another Bachelor audience to talk to.

We're right at the beginning of our third racism scandal in two calendar years. I know Greer Blitzer apologized on her Insta stories, but it didn't seem like an apology that's going to close this one out. Whether it's Rachael Kirkconnell and her Plantation Party with Confederate Flag decorations, or Erich Schwer and his unfortunate Jimi Hendrix yearbook photo. And probably others I've forgotten or we never knew about -- I doubt The Bachelor is asking potentials how they feel about the various white supremacy groups in the news these days.

It's exhausting. Not just witnessing it relentlessly happening, but also because my first instinct is to defend these people.

Hmmm.... okay, "defend" may be too strong a word. Rachael was in college, Erich and Greer were in high school, but it's not like it happened in the 60s.  High school for Erich was around 2010 -- they should all have known better, and they need to own it. Part of the price of walking into the public eye, kids.

But I can't help feeling for them. I thought Rachael was great on her season, before everything came out. I thought Greer was super cute and would have given her the FIR too, but I hadn't heard about those old tweets. I didn't have much of an impression of Erich, but Gabby seemed to like him and it was hard not to feel for his dad.

I want these people to do better, but more than that, I want them to have already BECOME better since then.

See, I grew up in the same environment Rachael did.  Not in Georgia, but Alabama. I grew up mostly in 80s, so I'm noticeably older and from a time even less enlightened than now. (Not that Alabama has solved its racism/sexism/homophobia, but it has definitely improved from 0.)

I never did anything extreme to the black folks I encountered or anything.  Never really even said anything awful that I can remember, at least not to them, but there was definitely a veneer of superiority that I hadn't ever thought about my whole life. I had just accepted it because I was steeped in from the people closest to me.

It's humiliating to look back on now. I have no way of tracking down people I knew briefly 30 years ago to apologize. I don't even live in that part of the country any more. But I did snap out of it, much to the consternation of some of my extended family. 

In fact, I remember when I snapped out of it.  It was like one of those huge dominos displays -- it looks like a vast room of monochromatic blocks, you knock one over, and 45 seconds later there's this amazing picture.  In my case, I realized I was an atheist.

That may seem like a non sequitur, but it's not, really. I'd spent my life hearing about how inferior black people were, how diseased gay people were -- and how evil atheists were. Well, I didn't feel evil. I wasn't any more inclined to murder anyone than I had ever been. I wasn't concerned about my soul -- if being kind wasn't good enough for God when he had provided zero evidence of his existence, then so be it.  Lots of people turned away from me, but I met others, may of whom are still around.

If everyone else in Alabama had been full of crap about atheists, why should I believe those same people about black folks or gay folks?

This probably seems obvious now, but at the time, it manifested as a rolling string of breathtaking epiphanies. This was near the end of high school, and I went on to one of the enormous southern football schools with a billion students, so those epiphanies came just in time.

Anyway, I'm probably babbling now.

My point is that I HAVE to believe Rachael and Erich and Greer(*) can turn it around, because they were/are what I was.

(* But not Lee, that idiot racist from Rachel Lindsey's season. Screw that guy.)

So I'm rooting for them all. Whatever growth or epiphany or enlightenment awaits them, it can come from anywhere at any time.

Anyhow -- that's all. This had all been kinda weighing on me, probably because what we're condemning them for opens up a few embarrassing memories.  Sorry to go on so long.

You may now continue your Friday, already in progress :)

Edited by phlebas
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I like to think people can change and grow as well.  I remember Rachael’s apology.  She didn’t apologize “if” she offended anyone and she said that her age at the time was no defence and she needed to do better.  I think her relationship with Matt shows she did the work.  

Regarding atheists…I read a study a number of years ago that involved students…I think they were in grade or middle school, and empathy.   The children of atheists tested as having the highest levels of empathy, and the conclusion of the study was that this was because they had no preset list of appropriate behaviours handed down by their faith that they would then judge people on.  (Not saying all religious people, but it was an interesting pov)

Edited by DEL901
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Interesting thoughts, @phlebas! Yeah, I think we need to extend some grace to “forgive” people for their transgressions that occurred before their pre-frontal cortex was fully developed. I have a 14-year-old who’s always talking about who’s “canceled”—and my kid got “canceled” by a group of friends for liking Marilyn Manson’s music, despite him being canceled. It’s a lot of pressure to keep up with who’s canceled for whatever reason and ensure you’re not aligned with them in any way, apparently. It’s interesting that Gen Z kind of course-corrected too far in the opposite direction there, after seeing the millennials get skewered for the stupid shit they posted in their youth. I’m just glad that as Gen X, I was a whole-ass adult before the internet and social media were a thing, so there’s no electronic evidence of me being a dumbass. I mean, I’ve probably written all kinds of dumb stuff about TV shows and the people on them on this forum alone (plus its precursor sites), but I don’t THINK anything I’d necessarily be ashamed of. Not putting that out there as a challenge to find something, lol. But, yeah, from what I can tell Greer herself wasn’t in blackface but instead pointed out that some other kid in blackface didn’t understand the history to know that was a bad thing, just honoring a celebrity that they liked. Should “everyone” know that blackface is unequivocally wrong in the twenty-teens?!? Absolutely! But I think the context was a kid defending another kid who was perhaps their friend saying they didn’t know it was wrong? If that is the case, then I think this is falling into the course correcting too much on the cancel culture if we can’t even say hey, my dumb friend didn’t know the history here. Like you said, people need to LEARN what’s wrong and why, but if they come upon that “teachable moment” then at least give them the opportunity to learn and grow from it, and genuinely apologize. Because if it’s just one strike, you’re out without any chance for forgiveness, how are we going to progress as a society? Give people a chance to do better, if they genuinely mean to do so.

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What seems troublesome to me about cancel culture and social media in general, is people thinking they don't really exist unless they are acknowledged in social media. At least that's how it seems to me. Or that their worth as a human being is determined by how many Likes and other electronic affirmations they get. Also cancel culture is getting to be like censorship and at the extreme, electronic lynching.

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I like requiring accountability, but agree it can go too far when it doesn’t allow for personal growth and “cancels” people for dumb stuff they said or did as stupid teens. (Naturally, there are some things that cross a line you can never come back from and actual remorse rather than  performative, is required, but who made gets to decide where this line is?)

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It's outside the purview of this forum, probably, but I would be interested in a discussion about the similarities between "cancel culture" (which would necessarily include a definition) and the simple exercise of the free market.

When it comes to someone like CH, yes he's a human and a U.S. citizen and is free to engage in lots of different things. But he is (or was) also a commodity, so ABC firing him reads to me less like censorship and more like trying to avoid a boycott -- which is the engine of how free market capitalism works.

But this probably isn't the right place. I am glad I didn't have a megaphone with a memory -- I don't know how teenagers exist in a social media world.

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