Updated: Jul 3, 2019
The title for this might have been weird but give me a second you’ll see why. So we all know that #prettyprivilege is a thing. People who are deemed better looking by our beauty standards are just treated better by society. Beautiful women are flown around the world and paid extravagantly just for being sweet. There are entire industries built on marketing and capitalizing on beauty. People who are socially deemed as beautiful are also more persuasive. Years of watching movies and shows with beautiful, honest and trustworthy protagonists have built the association in our heads. We’re more likely to be influenced by and trust beautiful people. And if those beautiful people are rich, famous and talented? There are people who are willing to do literally anything they ask.
So it's the 60’s and there’s this hippy musician who goes by the name of #CharlesManson. Charles Manson was an American criminal and cult leader. In mid-1967, he formed what became known as the Manson Family. Manson's followers committed a series of nine murders at four locations in July and August 1969. According to the Los Angeles County district attorney, Manson plotted to start a race war, though Manson and others involved long disputed this motive. At the time the Manson Family began to form, Manson was an unemployed ex-convict who had spent more than half his life in correctional institutions for a variety of offenses. Before the murders, he was a singer and songwriter in the Los Angeles music industry, mainly through his association with Dennis Wilson, drummer and founding member of the #BeachBoys. The group even recorded one of Manson's songs, "Cease to Exist," retitled "Never Learn Not to Love", as a B-sided single, but without a credit to Manson.
If you listen to Mansons interviews you can see that he is very articulate and well spoken. He was also very charismatic and handsome in an offbeat way. (pre-swastika forehead tattoo imo....even though it is part of his image) But other than being a decent musician and well spoken orator, Manson was no different than any crackhead rambling on the street. But that's when celebrity culture comes into play. Celebrities in our culture are idolized and worshiped as if they’re more than humans. There are tons of celebrities today that could start their own wars. If #Beyonce tells the Beehive to take over Russia, it's over for Russia.
Celebrities are worshiped and put on this pedestal, and Manson is the one that took his cult following to the extreme. After being discharged from prison for the second time, Manson began attracting a group of followers, mostly young women, from around California. They wanted to hang out with their favourite quirky rockstar. They were later named the "#MansonFamily". The group was involved in the murder of Gary Hinman in July 1969, then gained national notoriety after the murder of actress Sharon Tate and four others in her home on August 8 and 9, 1969, and Leno and Rosemary LaBianca the next day. Tex Watson and three other members of the Manson Family executed the Tate-LaBianca murders, acting under Manson's specific instructions. Manson Family members were also responsible for other assaults, thefts, crimes, and the attempted assassination of United States President Gerald Ford in Sacramento by Lynette Fromme.
Manson had not committed a single murder but he didn’t need to. He had these women under his spell. His spell being his charm and celebrity. Once you’ve reached a certain level of notoriety people automatically put you on a pedestal. The media took the Manson story and ran with it. Up until the moment of his death in 2017, Charles Manson was in the public consciousness and made the news every few years. The media painted him as this magician who can control people. Americans were given a villain they can be scared of.
The government already wanted to get rid of the hippy movement that was all about peace, love and expression because it was slowing down the war in Vietnam. Manson was the perfect face to turn the masses against it. He was a dirty, murderous, pot smoking hippie, everything that middle America feared at the time. Manson even said that he was forced to grow out his beard and wasn’t allowed to shave while he was in jail. The media needed him to maintain that bearded unkempt image. News outlets turned a deeply troubled man into a megalomaniacal genius capable of brainwashing. The media gave him his power and the media made him worshiped.
He was more powerful than he had ever been whilst in jail because every few years he’d get an interview and he’d come off as more and more eccentric and interesting. The more eccentric he seemed the more people fell for the storyline the media gave him. There are people in those youtube comment sections today calling him "woke" and "enlightened". The media forms our reality and made this man a paraya who’s philosophies are spread to this day all because news outlets wanted some content. So all I’m saying is, Beyonce is capable of taking over the entire world with a single tweet and she needs to be stopped.
Beyonce was at the 2019 #NBAFinals with her husband #JayZ. Jay was ordering his drink and a woman got close to his face. Beyonce changed her facial expression and looked slightly displeased, that was all it took for thousands of members from the #beehive to rush to the womans #instagram page with all types of threats and bashings. The #stans had no context, they thought she was a woman flirting with Jay, not knowing (or caring) about the reality of the situation. Beyoncé’s publicist acknowledged the incident and basically told them to relax. Beyonce wasn’t to blame for this and neither was Jay Z. The fans just worshiped her so much and were crazy enough to do what they thought their queen wanted them to do.
There’s really no cap on fame and influence. Some celebrities have more followers than citizens in some countries. That's an insane amount of power to hold. There isn’t a course to prepare people for fame either. People are just born with different talents but they’re still just people. How many kids did you have in your elementary school that could draw well or sing well but were still complete assholes. Nowadays you don't even have to be that talented to get famous. Our culture is built around worshiping these famous individuals. We deify them cause of the content they make at first but then because of the money and influence they seem to have. The more followers they have the larger than life they seem. And some people live and die by their every word, because those are our Olympians. We know their tales of seemingly overcoming the hardships we have to face in our capitalistic world, and some times creating work that has touched us deeply, and gotten us through our daily lives. But even though they did that, they’re still just humans. Not everything they say is perfect or correct. Think for yourself.
That's why celebrity culture is as much worshiping celebrities as it is tearing down celebrities. Cause we raise them up and get them to a God level, and once they’re at that level we resent them for it, and if they dare say something ungodly then we take everything they ever had away from them. You’re not allowed to make a mistake once you’re in the upper echelon of the beast that is the entertainment industry. The media creates and destroys. It craves talented people to build up and tear down as it sees fit. And nowadays with our social media #cancelculture it feels like people aren't even allowed to get better.
The best thing you can do for your favourite artists is just enjoy their content and leave it at that. You don’t have to agree with everything they say and believe. They’re not your avatar. You can love their work and disagree with them on many fundamental issues because you’re separate humans who are entitled to your opinions. See entertainment as a service industry where they’re overpaid. They provide you with the service of entertaining you and giving you art that you enjoy, other than that leave them alone. Don’t worship these people cause you’re also gonna be the cause of their demise. You don’t worship your doctors or firemen.....Idk do you? But I dont know though, if I’m ever a celebrity I might fuck around and get a group of fans to carry me around everywhere so I can literally float over all you niggas.
"When shit hits the fan is you still a fan?”- Kendrick Lamar, Mortal Man, ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’ circa 2015