Comedian Kathy Griffin did a photo shoot with a bloodied severed head that looked like President Donald Trump. A lot of people are quite up in arms about it. She apologized and was fired from CNN because of it. Many are pleased at this outcome and glad to see such a horrifying display punished accordingly. I don’t really feel the same way others do on this issue. I say to those upset about it, don’t get ahead of yourself (puns always intended) but rather take a moment to think of her actions in the context of political protest speech and compare it to days gone by.
While I do think it was in poor taste, I don’t think she should be fired for it, nor do I think she is deserving of the backlash she has gotten.
When asked earlier what I thought about it my first reaction was (not to be rude or anything) not shock at the Trump head but rather shock at the Kathy Griffin head. Her appearance was, to me, the more shocking of the two photographed heads. I couldn’t help but notice how rough she looked. You see, I have a general philosophy that almost all people are attractive in some way. I see very few people ever that I classify as ugly. I find that ugliness comes from within. To my eyes (and the very sensitive electro-sensors in my bill) the look on Griffin’s face is one of hatred. Walking around day in and day out with sarcasm and hatred shows on a person’s outsides, on their very countenance. That is the wellspring of ugliness. People could save millions on plastic surgery and makeup if they simply understood the power of internal happiness and self satisfaction. Anyway, back to Kathy Griffin and the Trump head.
The bloody Trump head didn’t bother me. I wasn’t shocked by it. I really wonder how many people were honestly shocked by it. How many of those same people watch Game of Thrones without so much as an “oh, my!” or watch zombies get slaughtered right and left on Walking Dead?
My first reaction really was that I was more drawn to the look on her face than the head in her hands. In fact, the cold expression looked like Griffin and the fake blood across the hair made it more resemble Griffin’s own red hair than anything else. It was almost as if she had metaphorically, and ironically, beheaded herself.
Of course there is the usual leftist hypocrisy associated with this.
Game of Thrones used a decapitated head of President George W. Bush in an episode and perhaps you remember the hapless rodeo clown that was fired after the uproar over his wearing an Obama mask.
I’ve heard how this was a traumatic thing for 11 year old Baron Trump to witness. Perhaps, or perhaps he watches game of thrones or Walking Dead. I don’t know. What he views is really between him and his parents rather than between him and Kathy Griffin.
To be sure, given the fact that Islamic Terrorists frequently behead and display, as did Griffin their gruesome and bloody trophies I can see how this might shock some people and I, absolutely, think it was a stupid choice for Griffin to make.
However, I don’t think it was a completely outrageous thing to do.
Was not King George hanged and burned in effigy in protest of his policies in the American colonies? Google the word “Effigy” and click images and the first one that shows up is one of Trump being burned in effigy and on the same page is Obama being burned in effigy too. A little scrolling and we find the Pope, bush, Hilary of course and even, lance Armstrong of all people, a little more reveals various dictators, and figures from other nations where protesters carry on this political tradition. How far back in time it goes, we really cannot say.
Why, I suppose you remember that time Pedro ran for president and was lambasted over the whole Summer Wheatley pinata incident. The aim of this is to make a statement of dissatisfaction at the person and to make the protesters feel better.
How many a young lady has torn the head from an old boyfriend in pictures of the two together? Many of them I’ll wager. She’s not trying to incite violence but rather to make herself feel better.
No, Kathy Griffin is no horrible criminal, she has not committed an act of treason. She’s performed the function jesters have played for all time, to poke the king. If done wisely this can create a wellspring of popular sentiment against the person in power but done poorly it can have the opposite effect. In this case, likely due to the use of fake blood, the very serious look on her nearly mummified face, and the “too soon” relationship to terrorist beheadings she miscalculated and is paying for it through the backlash, being fired from CNN, and for creating support for the man she wanted to sully.
She has to live with that, but I do not think what she did was something outside of the norm in terms of political protest.
I was not shocked as I understood the history of such actions. Now is not the time, I think, to turn away from free expression and speech. So many on the left are protesting in the streets, harming people with locks as weapons, oppressing little so-called micro-aggressions, and generally trying to be controlling.
Those of us who support freedom of speech should use this as a chance to show that we can not only dish it out, but we can take. Well, anyway, that’s what I think. Clever or stupid of her, I am still glad we live where we can do such things.
That said, there are always consequences for our actions.
While it’s true I wasn’t offended and I do support her right convey her message in her own way AND I understand that it is something people have done in protest of the powerful for 100’s of years I do not think she should be whining and crying about the outcome of her decision. She’s made her bed as it were.
Now she’s out there saying, “A sitting president of the United States, and his grown children, and the first lady, are personally – I feel – personally trying to ruin my life forever…”
We are free to say what we want but we are not free to avoid the consequences to our popularity. Now she says she has to do it for the children, for the gay guy afraid to come out, for women everywhere! She made a choice, stood alone, and now she is trying to gather allies to her side after a stunt that garnered criticism from the left and the right.
People hear the word “free” in free speech and they think it means without cost. As an adult she should know better than that.