Judge Not

Death is death.

When the death is that of a talented singer, fraught with issues and self-admitted demons, the news circus ramps up.

When the death happens as the Grammy Awards are being rehearsed, the proximity of interviewees is to great to resist.

SO the 24/7/365 coverage began on Saturday.

Anyone who breathed the same air as Whitney Houston felt qualified to opine on the tragedy.  Symptoms of instability were shared:  sweating, bad hair, smelling of alcohol and cigarettes.  Face time was granted without regard to the value of the observations. Speculation abounded.

As I type, I am hearing Nancy Grace castigate  Whitney Houston.

Bloggers declare her a cautionary tale, or a wasted talent.

The vultures searched immediately for details and were rewarded with bathtub imagery.

Why are we so hungry for lurid details?

Why does her story become an opportunity for the snapshot judging that we are getting so good at?

Addiction is a complicated issue.  It is associated with a web of developmental complications, often  representing self medication,  and resulting from mental health problems.  There is rarely a switch to  eradicate the desire that addicts have to travel outside of societal constrictions.

Those fortunate enough to enjoy mental health and stability at this time would do well to afford the victim- and her family- a bit of empathy.

Twitter, Facebook, Blogs- it is too easy to dismiss a person's struggles in anonymity and haste.

We're getting good at it.  There's the pity.

There may be a time when our lives are too complicated to be summarized in 140 characters.  It will not matter.




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  • It's "et al."..."al." is abbreviated; "et" is not.

  • In reply to juliepie628:

    You are right, of course. I don't think I ever added punctuation to et or al- just used it because Janet's Planet was being used as a blog name, and I had used that in my early ramblings. I never noticed the punctuation, do not know who type set it, and I am not sure if I care enough to pester the Trib into changing it. But I like your dedication to precision as a former English teacher- I admit that I have no connection to Latin.

    More than that, I love that it appears under the Judge Not posting. There is some irony there.

    Thanks, Janet Dahl et al.

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