Amy Winehouse is getting too much attention

I think Amy Winehouse has received too much media attention.

So what kind of a hypocrite would devote a blog to her, you may be asking yourself. The answer is that I think her death yesterday brings up other questions concerning people’s fascination with celebrity and the media’s rush to capitalize on said obsession.

On my personal Facebook page, I posted the following statement, and got quite a bit of response. I am putting the post and a sample of the responses here, as it obviously has sparked some discussion.

I wrote: “People will treat Amy Winehouse’s death as the tragic loss of a cultural icon. I think it is the case of a talented singer who did not make a serious cultural impact on the industry, embarrassed herself time and again in public, dissed better performers and called them names, and did not contribute to society with charity or donations. Don’t create a saint…”

Here are some of the responses:

Shelley wrote: “It’s a shame, but not much of a shock, and yes, she made her own choices. By comparison, almost 90 people died in Norway through no fault or choices of their own. The media really need to get it right.”

Craig wrote: “She is neither above nor below no one- in life and in death.”

Sandy wrote: “I fail to see why this is compared to what happened in Norway. Then you can say, well why was everyone so sad about Janis Joplin when so many died in the Vietnam War? It makes no sense to compare tragedies that just happened to occur at the same time…can’t both be sad and tragic and a waste of lives?”

Jay said: “When someone famous to the world’s standards dies, it does rattle viewpoints of immortality.”

I do think one thing that makes her death of note is the fact that she died at the age of 27, joining the infamous “27 Club” many celebrities belong to. I still say to make her into some kind of immortal diva that revolutionized the music industry is ridiculous. I had to roll my eyes at one of the top morning news programs already doing a feature on her and illustrating the story with animated picture frames of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, and….Amy Winehouse.

In my mind, that is comparing apples and oranges.

Is her death tragic? Yes. Is it a waste of talent? Yes. As a person, a human being, does she deserve the respect and recognition that everyone deserves after their passing? Absolutely.

So far, I just have not seen the coverage being kept in perspective.

What do you think? And yes, I guess I am a hypocrite, and it hurt a little to hit the “post” button.

9 thoughts on “Amy Winehouse is getting too much attention

  1. Wondering if, when You die, will people pay too much attention to You, Fred? I’ll be first to admit Winehouse was a troubled and misguided Star, joining the “27 club” is a sad way for a falling star to go. I also think I strongly disagree with this particular blog and You should re consider where You stand on the subject. I am not religious, but my favorite Aunt Catherine was. Her favorite quote, “But for the grace of God, there goes I.” Toss that around awhile, Fred.

  2. Yeah, Fred! Toss that around a while. I guess he told You.

    Shame he missed the point.

  3. I appreciate your input and thoughtful insight, Jim, although your response makes me wonder if you read the blog or just the headline. “Is her death tragic? Yes. Is it a waste of talent? Yes. As a person, a human being, does she deserve the respect and recognition that everyone deserves after their passing? Absolutely.”…I pointedly say she DOES deserve recognition for her life. My point is that she should not be turned into something she was not simply because she is now dead. I was not minimizing her worth as a human being, just as a cultural icon. I think that point was made pretty clearly if you read the blog.

  4. Amy Winehouse was a very sick woman. She’s been dying probably longer than she has been famous of a very serious disease – addiction. I’m glad it’s getting so much attention. People need to be consistently reminded of what this disease is about, so they can have a better idea of the choices they have to choose to live with this disease instead of dying from it.

    You may want to accumulate knowledge of what your writing about before speaking ill of the dead – someone who was dead far earlier than a few days ago.

    RIP, Miss Amy Winehouse.

  5. People do this all the time, when it comes to the dead. That miserable aunt you dreaded seeing at Christmas time, who called everyone names and poked them with push-pins…she drops over, and all of a sudden it’s, “Oh, poor, saintly Aunt Marge. She would’ve given the shirt off of her back for anyone”. When, in reality, no…she wouldn’t.
    This is just an example of the selective memory many people develop, after a loved one’s ( or not so loved one’s) passing… only on a much larger scale.

  6. A good, funny example of the way society tends to worship the dead–and I know you’re not a fan of his Fred, but you should watch this movie anyway–is World’s Greatest Dad with Robin Williams.

    It’s brilliant, and illustrates the mob mentality of making the dead seem far better than they were in life.

    Actually, no one’s speaking ill of Amy Winehouse, medgirl. She was an addict–that’s a fact, not an insult. Her death was tragic. But I agree that we shouldn’t now make a saint of her. I do hope people can look at her life and help her mistakes guide them to better choices. That’s the best that can happen now, unfortunately.

  7. Apologies Fred,
    I did read the headline and (briefly) scanned through the column. I still wish to stick with my main points, though. I also picked up on Your Twitter blog and feel the need to call You out on this as well! I AM NOT a newspaper columnist nor do I have a blog or the power it posseses. If You care to pick a fight, lets do it face to face. Dennis has my number and I’ll gladly buy You a cup of coffee or a beer and we can discuss this Man to Man instead of using the AT to sling at one another publicly. I’ll take a great deal of heat for this, but why don’t You write about the Anthony case getting far too much attention. I think You, I and the public in general would be better served.

    1. Just to clarify, my Twitter post referenced no one in particular, rather the (mostly private) personal digs from people who, again, apparently have not read the blog. If my blog has sparked healthy discussion and debate, then I am happy with the result. I stand by what I have written, and I think people can clearly see what I think on the subject. I see no reason to debate further with anyone on the subject, including those who have not taken the time to read the blog.

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