Saturday, December 13, 2008

so what's the point...really?

There seems lately to be an explosion of people baring all on television under the guise of "helping others."

I've posted before about Ruby, the morbidly obese woman who now has her own reality show to follow her as she tries to lose several hundred pounds. She is, of course, "doing it to help people" and raise awareness. I just don't see who might be helped by watching someone regularly humiliated on national television. Maybe I'm just dense.

I just finished watching something I taped off Sundance called "Dying at Grace." They filmed 5 people in hospice care at a Toronto hospital. They filmed for 14 weeks, during which time all 5 people died. The disclaimer prior to the beginning of the film says they and their families agreed to it "to help people."

In the case of the last one to go, the camera did a tight close-up of her face and stayed there for several minutes till she stopped breathing. I'm hoping she was too out of it by that point to know that.

These things all seem like a horrible invasion of privacy to me. Not only that, I completely fail to see how they "help" anyone else, unless feeding mankind's voyeuristic tendencies is "helping."

I'm pretty open about my birthmom and mental health experiences and issues, because both those things are stigmatized and shouldn't be, and if I can point that out through my own experience, great. Perhaps that initially was one of the underlying reasons behind these shows. But you'll notice I *choose* to be open about those things and I don't do it for fame or monetary gain. I do it because frankly, it helps me to help others in the same boat, and receive their help in return. I'll talk about both freely if you ask (and sometimes if you don't, if I need to ;-) -- but there's not a chance in hell I'd let cameras in my face, home, work, SHRINK, in the case of Ruby, just to "raise awareness." That can be done one person at a time.

Too bad Andy Warhol didn't live long enough to find himself proved right.


Now playing: mixed chorus - Bless This House
via FoxyTunes


Ye'he Sh'mey Raba Mevorach said...

Well said. Nothing to add.

Engineering Goddess said...

Totally agreed there - I can't even watch a movie about someone dying now-adays - let alone someone who is for real dying.