Several talk show hosts have made a game out of the so called ‘man on the street’ interviews. Jay Leno has a number of these posted on his website. I would suggest that you not watch these unless you just happen to be a glutton for punishment. They are not pretty. In fact they are sad.
In my opinion it seems very depressing that many of our citizens seem to be so ignorant of basic facts regarding our history or our government while knowing everything about movie stars, sports figures and singers. On the internet today are literally hundreds of websites extolling reports on celebrities eating ‘who wants to watch people eat’Movie stars and celebrities at work. Photos and reviews of famous kids of movie stars. Movie stars and celebrities on the beach and finally movie stars working out at the gym.
Give me a break, not only do I not know any of the people and never will, but I don’t care to see them playing on some beach off the coast of France or eating a burger at some place in Venice. Explain to me how this is interesting’does their mouth move differently from ours’Do they chew strangely’Do they stand on their heads or something’I mean come on, people how can anyone find this of interest’
Yet, the magazine racks are full of these photos and articles. Television programs abound about the lives of the rich and famous. More people probably know about Victoria Beckham than George Washington. People are signed up for Twitter so they can follow the every move of celebrities’. ‘I’m going into the men’s room right now..’is probably making it’s way around the globe at this moment about some celebrity.
Meanwhile, Jay Leno asks ordinary people very simple questions. Only one of about ten knew that the United States won it’s independence from England. One lady said we won it from Greece. Not one of people interviewed knew who Nancy Pelosi was. In 2008 no one knew Hillary Clinton was running for the President of the United States. Several teachers thought Betsy Ross was Rosa Parks and was famous for sewing a quilt on a bus in Alabama. One teacher said the first flag was sewn by Martha Ford. Several men thought the revolutionary war was led by some guy named Churchill. One brain from Texas did not know the name of the national anthem and said it didn’t matter since Texas had its own.
One college professor thought the war of independence was won in 1922. No one was able to recall what Paul Revere said when the British were invading. Leno ever tried coaching them by saying ”What did Paul Revere say when the British were coming”
On another segment he asked about famous American women and not one could be identified.
These were all nicely dressed and intelligent looking people. Where did they go to school and where have they been all of these years that they missed things relative to our current government and our political process’ How did they manage to miss learning about subjects and events that control and shape our future and our collective destiny’Several interviews revealed that a number of people thought the ‘electoral college’was in the NCAA basketball playoffs. God help us all if these people actually vote.
I feel fairly certain these were just the worst of the interviews, or at least I hope so. My optimistic side says they did not show the ones in which someone got the answers correct since this would defeat the purpose of the segment. I do feel that we all need to read more, talk and discuss more and focus on our lives rather than taking a voyeur position and monitoring the lives of the so called rich and famous. While their lives might be more interesting than ours, they are not without their problems and issues. We cannot do anything about them, but we can do things about our own.
Think about your time, instead of watching some celebrity and their attempt to dance, why not read to your child or someone else’s’You can’t call George Clooney but you can talk to that widow lady next door. Madonna won’t eat a cake you send to her, but I bet the working mother across the street will thank you for it.