WBEZ | Chris Brown http://www.wbez.org/tags/chris-brown Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en What hating Gwyneth Paltrow says about us http://www.wbez.org/blogs/nico-lang/2013-05/what-hating-gwyneth-paltrow-says-about-us-106954 <p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/228595-gwyneth-paltrow.jpg" style="line-height: 1.5; width: 558px; height: 290px;" title="(AP)" /></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Last week, Gwyneth Paltrow pulled one hell of a pop culture hat trick. In addition to breaking international box office records with her newest film, a little movie called </span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; font-style: italic; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Iron Man 3,</span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> <em>People</em> named her as the world&rsquo;s &ldquo;Most Beautiful Person.&rdquo; The world, however, proved itself not so fond of the multi-hyphenate actress. After her second foray into the world of cookbooks, Gwyneth Paltrow was voted the &ldquo;</span><a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2310405/Gwyneth-Paltrow-named-hated-celebrities-Hollywood-beats-Anne-Hathaway-Kristen-Stewart-poll.html" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; color: rgb(17, 85, 204); text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Most Hated Celebrity</span></a><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&rdquo; in the world. I sincerely hope that Kim Jong Un was ineligible.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">For the top honors in </span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; font-style: italic; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Star Magazine</span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&rsquo;s poll of famous pinatas, Paltrow beat out folks like Justin Bieber and Madonna, who everyone seems to agree on disliking. It will surprise absolutely no one that people dislike Katherine Heigl, as the media backlash on her &ldquo;outspoken&rdquo; persona has killed her career, and Paltrow herself gets more press about being an out-of-touch elitist than being an actress. The very name of some of these folks inspires rage.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Why do we hate Gwyneth Paltrow? It&rsquo;s not difficult to imagine why; she gives you reasons to dislike her </span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&mdash;</span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> as if she were handing them out like fliers on the street. Paltrow&rsquo;s personal lifestyle blog, GOOP, is an unintentionally hilarious look at the unguarded privilege she trades in. </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">On GOOP, you can purchase &ldquo;must-haves&rdquo; like a $298 bathrobe or a Mongolian cashmere throw rug at the low, low price of $1,098. Everything on the site feels pulled from Drew Droege&rsquo;s Chloe Sevigny impression, and one half expects to find Paltrow shilling an &ldquo;ironic coin skort by Obesity and Speed.&rdquo; She slays me. What would I do without her around?</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Whereas celebrities like Jennifer Lopez try to play down their wealth by insisting they are &quot;from the block,&quot; Paltrow embraces her status, name-dropping like it&#39;s her job. (Actually, it kind of is.) Gwyneth Paltrow recently defended her right to be entitled. Shooting back at her critics, Paltrow quipped, &ldquo;What, am I supposed to pretend like I don&rsquo;t have money?&rdquo; In an industry filled with false modesty, Paltrow broadcasts her celebrity net worth. </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">In a post-99% movement America, it&rsquo;s not surprising that Paltrow pushes our buttons about wealth and modesty, but what troubles me is how high she places on this list. She&#39;s silly and self-involved, but is she really worth hating <em>that </em>much? </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">After Paltrow, we see celebrities like Kristen Stewart (#2) and LeAnn Rimes (#12) placing high on the list, for reasons that are equally benign. The list is a fascinating indication of our cultural priorities of hate, and LeAnn Rimes and Kristen Stewart are high profile figures who cheated on their partners. Their male cheater counterparts, Jesse James (#19) and Ashton Kutcher (#13), both placed lower </span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&mdash; </span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">despite the fact that James&rsquo; scandal was far more public.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Do I think that we should care all that much that Ashton Kutcher was unfaithful to Demi Moore? No, that&rsquo;s their marriage. But it&rsquo;s troubling that our culture of slut-shaming sets such clear double standards for gender behavior, where we punish women more for stepping out on their relationships than we do men. </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">However, this list shows that we tend to punish women more in general. Two-thirds of our most hated celebrities are women, and females count for 7 of the top ten slots. Renowned sleazebags like Donald Trump and Charlie Sheen didn&rsquo;t make the list, but Anne Hathaway nabbed the #9 spot for &ldquo;</span><a href="http://nymag.com/thecut/2013/04/20-most-hated-celebrities-why-we-hate-them.html" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; color: rgb(17, 85, 204); text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">trying too hard</span></a><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">.&rdquo; </span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; font-style: italic; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">New York Magazine</span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> was </span><a href="http://nymag.com/thecut/2013/04/hathaway-not-the-most-hated-person-in-hollywood.html" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; color: rgb(17, 85, 204); text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">shocked</span></a><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> she didn&rsquo;t win.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Compare this with Chris Brown. Despite his constant excoriation in the media as a domestic abuser, Brown came in last on the list. He just made it in at #20. Sean Penn famously tied Madonna to a chair and beat her with a baseball bat. Penn didn&rsquo;t even get a mention. </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">What makes Gwyneth Paltrow twenty times more hateable than Chris Brown? Why does Jennifer Lopez (seen as an arrogant diva, no matter what she insists) rank at #3 while the more publicly terrible Justin Bieber claims only the #8 spot? </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">In a piece for </span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; font-style: italic; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">The Nation</span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">, Jessica Valenti </span><a href="https://www.google.com/#output=search&amp;sclient=psy-ab&amp;q=women+have+to+be+likable+jessica+valenti&amp;oq=women+have+to+be+likable+jessica+valenti&amp;gs_l=hp.3...5030.14758.0.14980.46.44.1.1.1.0.174.3619.35j9.44.0...2.0...1c.1.12.psy-ab.W1YthXq3JcM&amp;pbx=1&amp;bav=on.2,or.r_cp.r_qf.&amp;bvm=bv.45960087,d.aWM&amp;fp=c0d7e396fbbf52a4&amp;biw=1366&amp;bih=656" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; color: rgb(17, 85, 204); text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">states</span></a><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> that it has to do with our double standards of success. Valenti argues that &ldquo;the more successful you are, the less you will be liked,&rdquo; and this is a problem for women who need to be likeable to be approved of. Kristen Stewart is often derided for her inability to look happy, but Sean Penn isn&rsquo;t exactly Leslie Knope either. If you don&rsquo;t smile, you&rsquo;re a &ldquo;b*tch&rdquo; and a social pariah </span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&mdash; </span></b><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">whereas Penn is a two-time Oscar winner.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Celebrities like Stewart, Gwyneth Paltrow or Kim Kardashian act as socially accepted repositories for our cultural misogyny, people you can say almost anything about without fear of backlash. </span></b><b style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">At a time when things like street harassment are becoming </span><a href="http://colorlines.com/archives/2013/04/stop_telling_women_to_smile_exhibit_opens_in_brooklyn.html" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; color: rgb(17, 85, 204); text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">increasingly unacceptable</span></a><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> because of social policing and awareness, we&rsquo;re moving that harassment onto the internet. Instead of yelling at a woman on the street to smile, we&rsquo;re saying it to Kristen Stewart online </span></b><b style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">&mdash;</span></b><b style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> because she can&rsquo;t talk back. </span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><b id="docs-internal-guid-0ef0156b-66a8-b5a0-57cb-c37201bd4d5d" style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Quentin Crisp once said that in society, &ldquo;there&rsquo;s no greater sin than being a woman,&rdquo; and <em>Star </em>proved him right. According to this list, we hate it when you harass or abuse women.</span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> But not as much as we hate women.</span></b></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.5; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><em><b style="line-height: 1.5; font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Georgia; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Nico Lang writes about LGBTQ issues in Chicago. You can follow Nico on <a href="http://www.facebook.com/nicorlang">Facebook</a>, <a href="http://www.twitter.com/nico_lang">Twitter</a> or <a href="http://achatwithnicolang.tumblr.com">Tumblr</a>.</span></b></em></p></p> Thu, 02 May 2013 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/nico-lang/2013-05/what-hating-gwyneth-paltrow-says-about-us-106954 Rihanna, Bieber and the dangers of celebrity worship http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/rihanna-bieber-and-dangers-celebrity-worship-106255 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rihanna-barrington-high-032213-600x337.jpg" title="Rihanna speaks to students at Barrington High School on Friday, March 23, after arriving nearly 4 hours late. (Celebuzz)" /></p><div class="image-insert-image ">The gymnasium of Barrington High School exploded with <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/barrington_area/chi-rihanna-barrington-high-school-20130322,0,5100849.story" target="_blank">Beatlemania</a>-like screams on Friday as <a href="http://www.mtv.com/artists/rihanna/" target="_blank">Rihanna</a>, pop princess of the Billboard charts and racy queen of the tabloids, made her grand entrance.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Never mind that she was over three hours late, a delay she attributed to &quot;<a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2297876/Rihanna-holds-2-000-Chicago-school-children-hours--stays-just-12-minutes.html" target="_blank">Chicago traffic</a>&quot; in an Instagram photo she posted just an hour prior. The meet-and-greet for students who had won a video contest about &quot;<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/barrington_area/chi-rihanna-barrington-high-school-20130322,0,5100849.story" target="_blank">giving back to your community</a>&quot; was obviously low on Rihanna&#39;s priority list, as she offered &quot;thanks for waiting&quot; non-apology to the 2,500 person crowd--the majority of them young girls--and stayed for only 12 minutes.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Fans grew disgruntled waiting for Rihanna to arrive, deeming her behavior &quot;<a href="http://chicagoist.com/2013/03/23/rihanna_visits_barrington_high_scho.php" target="_blank">rude</a>&quot; and <a href="http://chicagoist.com/2013/03/23/rihanna_visits_barrington_high_scho.php" target="_blank">pathetic</a>.&quot; However,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.celebuzz.com/2013-03-23/riri-tardy-for-the-high-school-party/" target="_blank">most were quick to forgive her</a>&nbsp;when she finally showed up. &nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;It was a really long wait, but Rihanna is so inspirational,&quot; freshman Batul Yawer told the <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/19029873-761/barrington-students-shine-during-3-hour-wait-for-rihanna.html" target="_blank"><em>Chicago Sun Times</em></a>.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/021212-justinbieber.jpg" style="width: 320px; float: right; " title="Justin takes a selfie on an audience member's phone. (SugarScape)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">Yeesh.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">What do these teens find &quot;so inspirational&quot; about Rihanna? Sure, she caught the attention of hitmaker Jay Z in 2004, and with the help of some very talented songwriters, churned out <a href="http://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/rihanna-equals-madonnas-record-of-number-1450160" target="_blank">12 num</a><a href="http://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/rihanna-equals-madonnas-record-of-number-1450160" target="_blank">ber one singles</a>&nbsp;to tie Madonna&#39;s record. However, the 24-year-old singer is also famous for <a href="http://hollywoodlife.com/2012/04/20/rihanna-drugs-use-coachella-cocaine-weed-pic/" target="_blank">rolling drugs</a> on her bodyguard&#39;s head,&nbsp;<a href="http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/11/23/rihanna-apologizes-to-press-for-grueling-777-plane-tour/" target="_blank">acting erratically</a>&nbsp;on several occasions and, perhaps most disturbingly,&nbsp;returning to <a href="http://www.vibe.com/article/chris-brown-rihanna-confirms-we-are-back-together" target="_blank">boyfriend/abuser</a> Chris Brown after he was convicted of physically assaulting her in 2009.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Of course, everbody makes mistakes, and even chart-topping royalty like Rihanna should not held to standards unattainable by mortal beings. But her questionable conduct in the public eye (irresponsible at best, nihilistic at worst) sets a horrible example for her young fans to follow: be a bad girl, behave unprofessionally,&nbsp;<a href="http://gawker.com/5960967/the-new-rihannachris-brown-duet-is-great-unfortunately" target="_blank">record a love song</a>&nbsp;with the man that punched you in the face and <a href="http://www.justjared.com/2013/02/04/rihanna-dont-call-me-a-bad-role-model/" target="_blank">make no apologies</a> for it.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Fans also cling with troubling rabidity to one <a href="http://bieberfever.com">Justin Bieber</a>, pop singer and babe magnet extraordinaire. His tween devotees (they call themselves &quot;Beliebers&quot;) have&nbsp;slammed him with false&nbsp;<a href="http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1673747/justin-bieber-paternity-suit.jhtml" target="_blank">paternity suits</a> just to get his attention, issued death threats to his now ex-girlfriend Selena Gomez and<a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/cut4bieber-trending-topic-draws-shock-outrage-article-1.1235624" target="_blank"> threatened to cut themselves</a> over his alleged drug use.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Bieber is a talented-enough kid, but this whirlwind of insanity around a 19-year-old who frequently throws temper tantrums (he had the &quot;<a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2013/mar/04/justin-bieber-worst-birthday-club" target="_blank">worst birthday</a>&quot; ever, you guys) and doesn&#39;t even know how to spell &quot;<a href="http://wzlx.cbslocal.com/2013/03/13/5-things-justin-bieber-could-learn-from-janis-joplin/" target="_blank">Janis Joplin</a>&quot; is downright terrifying.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The hero-worship of athletes is also way over the top. From high school to college to professional leagues, sports stars are showered with inconceivable amounts of money and praise. The greats (Michael Jordan, Tom Brady and even the recently<a href="http://www.time.com/time/photogallery/0,29307,1966486,00.html" target="_blank"> scandalized</a> Tiger Woods) are revered as gods. But besides being masters of their game, what have they really done to better society as a whole?</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" on="" pbs.="" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Gloria%20Steinem.jpg" style="height: 240px; width: 320px; float: left; " title="Gloria Steinem circa 1972, featured in the PBS documentary 'Makers: Women Who Make America.' (USAToday) " />Some of my role models are actors and musicians; however, they also possess many qualities outside the realms of &quot;acting&quot; and &quot;singing&quot; &nbsp;that I hold in high regard. I look up to these people not just because of their talent, but because of how they carry themselves through the world.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jessica-massa/four-reasons-millennial-w_b_863420.html" target="_blank">Tina Fey</a> inspires me as a writer, feminist and whip-smart businesswoman. I admire Andrew Bird for being a positive influence on other aspiring musicians through the <a href="https://rockforkids.ejoinme.org/?tabid=221218" target="_blank">Andrew Bird Scholarship Fund</a>&nbsp;for Chicago arts programs. Many more of my role models are featured in the PBS documentary <a href="http://www.pbs.org/makers/home/" target="_blank"><em>Makers</em></a>, which chronicles over 50 years of trailblazing American women: from Hillary Rodham Clinton to Maya Angelou to the original leader of the feminist movement, the incomparable Gloria Steinem.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Outside of the entertainment industry, I implore our nation&#39;s youth to look to the people in their own communities for inspiration. Our life-changing teachers, nurses, neighbors, social workers, mentors, counselors, close family and friends are the true unsung heroes of our society; never to receive the same widespread media coverage as Rihanna and Justin Bieber, but always the ones whom we should value the most.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>Who are your role models? Leave a comment below, tweet&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/leahkpickett" target="_blank">@leahkpickett</a>&nbsp;or join the conversation on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/leahkristinepickett" target="_blank">Facebook</a>.&nbsp;</em></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></p> Mon, 25 Mar 2013 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/rihanna-bieber-and-dangers-celebrity-worship-106255 Meet Chris Brown's tattoo artists http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-09/meet-chris-browns-tattoo-artists-102488 <p><p><a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2201616/Chris-Brown-reveals-new-tattoo-beaten-woman--denies-ex-Rihanna.html"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chris%20brown%20tattoo_0.jpg" style="float: left; height: 322px; width: 300px; " title="An article in the Daily Mail about Brown's tattoo." /></a>Described as a &quot;Grammy-winner, girlfriend beater and real-life trainwreck&quot; by <em>The Paper Machete</em> producer Kim Bellware, Chris Brown made headlines last week by debuting a new tattoo that some said looked like the face of his ex-girlfriend Rihanna after she had been abused by him.</p><p>Though <a href="http://www.tmz.com/2012/09/11/chris-brown-tattoo-sugar-skull-day-of-the-dead-rihanna/">Brown denied</a>&nbsp;it, explaining that the tattoo was actually inspired by a Mexican Day of the Dead sugar skull, the world was left wondering about the how and why in choice in body art.</p><p>We went straight to the source: Comedians Brendan Dowling and Tim Sniffen, who -- luckily enough -- know exactly how that tattoo came to be. Read an excerpt below or listen above:</p><p><em>Tim:&nbsp;Since the first Egyptians used crude pigments injected beneath their skin to make mystical symbols and designs, the allure of the tattoo has been with us.</em></p><p><em>Brendan:&nbsp;But God knows we didn&#39;t expect to wind up running the hottest tattoo parlour in Los Angeles.</em></p><p><em>Tim:&nbsp;Nope: #8 on Time Out LA&rsquo;s list: &#39;The Twenty Underground Tattoo Parlors We&#39;re Not Going To Tell You About&#39;.</em></p><p><em>Brendan:&nbsp;Look at us now!</em></p><p><em>Tim:&nbsp;That&#39;s right, it started at some afterparty, we had just filmed a multi-episode arc for </em>2 Broke Girls<em>--</em></p><p><em>Brendan:&nbsp;We kill the horse.</em></p><p><em>Tim:&nbsp;Well, there&#39;s that ruined.</em></p><p><em>Brendan:&nbsp;So we&#39;re at this party and Bonnie Raitt won&#39;t shut up about how bored she is with her body.</em></p><p><em>Tim: No, and when she corners you, that hair, you&#39;re not getting away.</em></p><p><em>Brendan:&nbsp;So she&#39;s whining about how she has to be a cronesmaid at Katy Perry&rsquo;s divorce party and the dress shows off her shoulders, and she hates her shoulders.</em></p><p><em>Tim:&nbsp;Finally we can&#39;t take it anymore. We grab some wire from Fred Savage&#39;s basement...</em></p><p><em>Tim and Brendan:&nbsp;Fred Savage! That&#39;s where we were.</em></p><p><a href="http://thepapermacheteshow.com/" target="_blank">The Paper Machete</a>&nbsp;<em>is a weekly live magazine at the Horseshoe in North Center. It&#39;s always at 3 pm., it&#39;s always on Saturday, and it&#39;s always free. Get all your&nbsp;</em>The Paper Machete Radio Magazine&nbsp;<em>needs filled&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/tags/paper-machete" target="_blank">here</a>, or download the podcast from iTunes&nbsp;<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/podcast/the-paper-machete-radio-magazine/id450280345" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 20 Sep 2012 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-09/meet-chris-browns-tattoo-artists-102488