MTV’s The Real World Los Angeles was my first exposure to reality tv. It was different because the people were, well – real.
They weren’t acting per se and the plot was unpredictable because we were watching their lives not listening to their lines. The people were characters but they weren’t scripted.
This new genre of tv opened up an otherwise elusive segment of society to the average person. No longer did a person have to be talented to be famous. All they had to be was interesting. For some, they just had to be willing to make a fool of themselves in front of the camera.
But it was obvious that most of the people had a hidden agenda. They wanted to use the exposure from the show as a springboard to fame and fortune. It’s exactly the same today – but worse.
The New Accessibility
The World Wide Web makes fame accessible to all with a video camera which is just about everyone. All one must do is make a funny, silly or offensive video and hope it goes viral. If it does fifteen minutes of fame is right around the corner.
I admit that when I was young I too wanted to be famous. Of course I told myself that I’d use my fame to help others; you know, children, the homeless, the hungry and so on. But truthfully I just wanted the fame; to be known, respected, even revered. Maybe all of us want this if we’re honest with ourselves.
“And now more than ever the desire to be famous permeates our culture. It’s no longer out of reach to be like those we idolize.”
The New Cliche
But did we ever stop to think that those we watch on stage, in stadiums or on the small or silver screen never wanted to be famous in the first place. Maybe all they wanted was to sing the song, play the game or give a great performance.
Maybe they didn’t thrust themselves into the spotlight but the spotlight thrust itself upon them. I can hardly imagine the likes of River Phoenix, Michael Jackson or Whitney Houston not being famous. And maybe their self-destructive ways were in rebellion against the expectations of the fame they didn’t seek.
Or maybe they did seek fame at first only to learn that it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.
I don’t want my kids to be rock stars. I want my kids to be ordinary superheroes who love God, their children, and the life they’ve been given. I want their stage to be the dinner table, the little league field and the PTA.
Are you equipping your children to be ordinary superheroes? How?
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