Sunday, February 12, 2012

Reactions To Whitney Houston's Death

Whitney Houston was found dead Saturday, and while details are still sketchy, you know what the first thought that everyone had was: Cocaine is a helluva drug. Or crack, or xanax or whatever else it is that Houston was putting in her body over the past 15 years. It doesn't really matter what it was that eventually killed her, it's safe to say the cause of her death was as natural as the face of that other iconic singer who died a few years ago. And the reaction to Whitney's death was similar to that of Michael Jackson's, albeit to a much lesser extent. Facebook and Twitter exploded with the usual range of ridiculous reactions. Everything from tasteless jokes to unbelievable hysterical sobbing farewells to judgmental scoldings. And almost all of these types of reactions are misguided. In the social network era, there seems to be a competition to outdo each other with either the funniest, most outrageous comment or the most serious, overly tragic 3 sentence eulogy or the finger wagging, holier than thou lecture. Why do we have to say anything about a celebrity's death though? If I came up to you Saturday morning and brought up Whitney Houston, chances are you would either have no reaction at all or make a joke about how cracked out her and Bobby were and how stupid their "hell to the no" reality show was a few years ago. You most likely would not have started talking about how she changed your life. She was a huge star 20 years ago, and has basically been a sad reminder of the powers of addiction for a decade. It's unnecessary to say "she deserved it" anymore than any person who's addicted to something deserves it. Because she was famous doesn't mean we should make them out to be a saint nor should we take this time to lecture everyone about drug use. It's always sad when someone dies, but Whitney Houston being found dead might be the least shocking death since ODB. Every death of an innocent person is a tragedy regardless of fame, but let's not pretend like we didn't see it coming. Let's just let her rest in peace now and not exaggerate our love of a once mega star who we all laughed at for the better part of a decade.

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