Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Carrie Prejean feels she is being "censored" and has been on several major news networks to talk about it.

People who use the world "Censored" without understanding or caring what it really means irritate me. You are not being CENSORED if:

1. People insult you

2. Not every medium wants to write about you or your cause, or feature you talking about you or your cause. For example, if not every single news show wants to interview you about your memoirs of life as a beauty queen.

3. The UU World doesn't want to run an insulting ad from your favorite organization but has offered to run other ones that are more respectful.*

If you write a book and the government makes your book illegal, come talk to me. Otherwise, it's time to find another talking point because whining that your very well-known ideas are being censored because one news show won't interview you, one magazine won't run your ad, etc, etc and soforth just makes you look dumb.


*Obviously doesn't apply to Carrie, but I did hear the UU World accused of "censorship" for not wanting to run the FFRF's ad in the future. The atheist who made this claim is FAR from alone. People CONSTANTLY bitch that anyone who wants to ignore their well-known ideas is censoring them.


Paul Oakley said...

And, there are those who consider that they are being censored when their comment is deleted or not approved by a blogger for inclusion on the blogger's site (which exists only for the blogger to spread her own ideas and express her own taste and have friendly interchange with people interested in many of the same things).

Nope. Sorry. Not censorship.

Bill Baar said...

She's laughing all the way to the bank here flogging her book. Easy on the eyes but are you really that interested?

PG said...

In fairness to Prejean, I thought her favored word was actually "silenced" (not censored) as in:

"The main point is there has been a campaign against me to try to silence me for the past seven months for the answer that I gave at the pageant ... All I know is there is a campaign against me trying to silence me. They tried to embarrass me. They tried to humiliate me. They tried to attack me. And I'm still standing ... Americans heard only bits and pieces of what really happened. I think that there is a liberal bias in the media, and it's unfortunate that conservative women are attacked for their beliefs. It's unacceptable and it shouldn't happen. So many Americans are frustrated. So many Americans believe that their beliefs are under attack, and they should be silent and free speech doesn't exist."

Now, if one reads this unsympathetically, it's clear that Carrie Prejean is a moron. She thinks that criticism of her and especially of her beliefs is a denial of her right to free speech. For her to have free speech, no one who disagrees with her can fire back at her.

On the other hand, there's also an element of sexual McCarthyism in what's happening with Prejean -- the sort of lurid fascination that the right had with Bill Clinton's sex life. With the right, it was fairly simple-minded character assassination: they sought to remove him from the office of the presidency through a matter that had absolutely nothing to do with his areas of authority.

Prejean's case is more complicated, because the slut-shaming (talking about her boob job, her masturbation video, her topless modeling, etc.) is actually tied to the base of her claimed authority, which is that she is speaking for traditional Christian values. So there's the bizarre spectacle of a woman who's had a beauty pageant pay for her breast implants declaiming, "Our bodies are temples of the Lord. We should earn respect and admiration for our hearts, not for showing skin to look sexy." (Jesus threw the money-changers out of the temple, but the plastic surgeons were totally cool?)

But it is still McCarthyist in the sense of phenomena like the Hollywood blacklist. It is still a (private, non-governmental, nothing-to-do-with-the-First-Amendment) attempt to take down someone's reputation because of her expression of her beliefs.

Personally, I don't think there's a right to a falsely-stainless reputation; if you say something about me, and it's true, the intelligent course of action on my part is not to attack you for telling uncomfortable truths, but to acknowledge that I did something wrong and that I have learned my lesson. On the other hand, there is such a concept both in law and social mores as the invasion of privacy, although it's difficult to say to what extent presidents and Miss USA contestants are entitled to have their private lives respected (especially, as in Prejean's case, when they are claiming moral authority to judge the validity of others' relationships).

Lilylou said...

Maybe she's actually being censured.

fausto said...

What kind of censorship is she complaining about? It couldn't be that she isn't getting enough media exposure, if she's being allowed to complain on the national news networks. Is she complaining that the pornographic sex tape she made, that she first tried to hide, now ought to be all over national TV, but isn't? That would be odd, for someone who wants to be perceived as a conservative Christian.

Chalicechick said...

(((Easy on the eyes but are you really that interested?)))

Ummm... I thought I was pretty clear what with the UU World example that she was just the lastest example of a person deceptively crying "censorship," a behavior that has bugged me for some time.

Chalicechick said...

(((( It is still a (private, non-governmental, nothing-to-do-with-the-First-Amendment) attempt to take down someone's reputation because of her expression of her beliefs. )))

I'm really not sure that's the case.

Hollywood has no lack of beautiful but not terribly bright young women who are slut shamed because of things like sex tapes and gift boob jobs and obnoxious behavior in spokesperson-like roles.

I don't see that Prejean's shaming comes from her politics. I would certainly say seeming hypocrisy of her behavior fanned the flames, but there are plenty of non-Conservatives who are treated similarly to Prejean.

Conversely, it's pretty well known the Sarah Michelle Gellar is a Republican and she's a well-respected actress who is treated quite well by the press.


PG said...

Hollywood has no lack of beautiful but not terribly bright young women who are slut shamed because of things like sex tapes and gift boob jobs and obnoxious behavior in spokesperson-like roles.

:-) I actually made this point myself to someone (specifically citing Vanessa Williams as a pageant winner who had no discernable political views yet got slut shamed), but Prejean's indiscretions are being held up by her political opponents as reasons not to take her seriously. One of my friends on Facebook actually linked a story about the sex tape and commented "Now sit down and shut up, Carrie Prejean."

As for SMG's being a Republican, she's certainly a feminist and pro-LGBT by her own words, and I can't find anything in a quick search that definitively says she is Republican; everything seems to be based on others' statements, not her own. She doesn't show up in the FEC database for $200+ federal political contributions.

hsofia said...

I had to google this name because I had no idea who she was. Is it censorship when one's 15 minutes are UP?

fausto said...

It is still a (private, non-governmental, nothing-to-do-with-the-First-Amendment) attempt to take down someone's reputation because of her expression of her beliefs.

That seems to be what she's really trying to say, despite the vacuity of her claims about denial of First Amendment rights. And there may even be a faint odor of truth on her breath when she says it: the heated opposition to her was indeed provoked by her speaking out against gay marriage.

But that's no longer what the controversy surrounding her is about. What she doesn't see is that the career in modeling, including erotic modeling, the pornographic videos, the boob job, the general atmosphere of sexual exploitation in which she willingly participated, and her dishonest attempts to disguise some of that in order to advance her own career opportunities, undermine the credibility of any public moral pronoumcements grounded in Christianity that she might try to make. It's not that she is being persecuted for her Christianity; it's that she is being ignored for her hypocrisy.

What does her Christianity really teach about her situation? Paul wrote that the body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and should be treated with a commensurate sense of honor and respect. Jesus said to remove the logs from your own eyes before trying to before trying to help remove the specks from anyone else's eyes.

Chalicechick said...

I was thinking more of Lindsay Lohan and her many friends and imitators who are beautiful starlets known for their sex tapes and their poor performance on the job.
(If you follow that link, start at the bottom.)

To me Vanessa Williams is in a different category because aside from her "Winning beauty pageants while black" crimes, she didn't actually DO anything to bring it on.

Prejean seems so focused on being a celebrity and becoming famous at any cost that frequently more or less invites this negative attention. Most beauty queens, if they care this much about celebrity at least don't show it.

Most beauty queens that say things that people don't like from the stage and/or get themselves fired are famous for a week or two and then the world forgets about them. Prejean is working very hard to keep that from happening to her, while remaining offended that fame actually has consequences and shocked that those consequences apply to her.

But as Bill points out, us talking about her might well be a victory for her. If she's not laughing all the way to the bank, she's at least laughing all the way to the drug store to buy more tabloids with her on the cover.