Celebrities say and do a lot of awfully stupid things, and for some odd reason, society often calls upon the Hollywood elite to offer political commentary. Most recently, Katy Perry offered her personal national security advice after the devastating terror attack in Manchester on Monday on the very popular and nationally syndicated radio program Elvis Duran and the Morning Show.
“I think the greatest thing we can do now is unite as people, as fan bases, all of it,” said Perry. “Whatever we say behind people’s backs, the Internet can be a little bit ruthless as far as fan bases go, but I think that the greatest thing we can do is just unite and love on each other. No barriers, no borders, we all just need to co-exist.”
As if the interview wasn’t cringeworthy enough, Duran agreed and added the bombing “gives us all the more reason why we need to have big, fun concerts.”
Katy Perry wasn’t the only celebrity who offered commentary on the Manchester bombing. Kim Kardashian tweeted “Concerts are supposed to be a place where u can let loose & have fun. So scary to not feel safe in this world. @arianagrande I love you.” The reality star eventually deleted the tone-deaf tweet after considerable backlash.
Not only is it alarming that these particular celebrities seem to be more concerned with their concert-going experiences as opposed to the 22 innocent lives taken on Monday, they also have completely and conveniently ignored the true threat: radical Islamic terrorism.
Sure, it would be nice if we could “just co-exist” as Perry suggested, but that is an astoundingly impractical solution to an ever growing threat. There is no negotiation, no compromise, and certainly no coexisting with those who want to destroy the Western world and everything that it represents.
The kind of evil that runs through the veins of people like Salman Abedi, the primary suspect in the Manchester bombing tragedy, cannot be leveled with. Frighteningly, this sort of tragedy has become all too common in Western Europe. Countries like England and France have let their national security falter in pursuit of more open borders. It has been reported the family of Salman Abedi had contacted the authorities about him in the past, warning he may be dangerous. Apparently, these warnings went unrecognized.
This sort of laissez-faire approach to national security is wildly irresponsible and puts each and every citizen at risk. Not only is it putting the safety of the average Brit on the back burner, it’s also particularly unfair to the millions of peaceful and practicing Muslims in the United Kingdom. The more these violent attacks are normalized, the more stereotypes plague the Muslim community.
It is easy for people to spout off policy prescriptions in 140 characters on Twitter, and even easier to look like a fool while doing it. But the question remains — why do we as a society care what celebrities think about issues like budgets, health care reform, or even national security?
In an age where everyone considers themselves an activist, stupidity spreads like wildfire. In 2017, celebrities are expected to take liberal political stances and espouse them on social media, lest they want to be publicly ridiculed by their followers and fans. While each and every individual is absolutely entitled to their own opinion, this sort of societal pressure only fuels a culture of misguided activism and protest for the sake of protest. Here’s hoping that celebrities and everyday Americans alike think before they speak and remember what is most important: our safety and the safety of our allies abroad.