One of my pet peeves with social media and it's relationship with artists and celebrities in general is the unbelievable stupidity and rampant narcissism with which some individuals post concerning their political, religious and sociological views on society as a whole.
No one cares...I've learned this from experience.
The Paula Deen controversy while not based in the misuse of social media is a prime example of a celebrity that seems to have become incredibly complacent by putting them self in a position of having their lively hood taken away merely because they would seem to lack the basic common sense that freedom of speech does not allow one to yell fire in a crowded theatre or theatre at a crowded fire. The Deen controversy has little to do with freedom of speech and everything to do with common sense with the exception of a troubling double standard that some are using as they pass judgement on someone they have never met and on facts that are still somewhat muddled at the time of this piece going to press.
The same pious, self righteous and politically correct individuals ready to crucify Ms. Deen are in fact the very same people that turned a blind eye to the lies, deceit and criminal actions of one former President William Jefferson Clinton and his affair. The collective blind eye turned by these individuals was justified with the rationale of "everyone does it."
Let's be honest people...We all have made statements be they in public, on social media or at work that we would love to take back. "Everyone does it" is an excuse and an exercise in moral outrage of convenience. I won't even begin to address the issues involving sexual innuendo and other related matters that are alleged to occur at one of Deen's establishments. I will address the use of certain words that we all agree are disgusting, offensive and that there should be zero tolerance for no matter what race the individual is that makes these remarks.
Words only carry as much power as you allow them to have but words can hurt despite the best of intentions. While I applaud the Food Network and their decision to move forward, before you crucify someone in an attempt to take the self righteous moral high ground ask yourself this:
"Is my outrage consistent with the way I live my own life?"
Better still, take Deen's example and think before you speak or post...
Let common sense and good judgement prevail. Never post or speak in anger and remember what doesn't offend you may offend someone else. If you have to ask yourself, "I wonder if this is o.k.? Then it usually isn't. If you are in the public eye there is usually someone waiting in the wings to tear you down. Don't give them the satisfaction.