Just a heads up, this is a bit of a rant. If you aren't into that, feel free to pass...these thoughts are my own. So Charlie Sheen has gone absolutely crazy. And we love watching every second of it.
But this post isn't about him.
In a world where Snooki is a bestselling author, we've acquired a taste for the absurd. There's nothing the masses love more than a train wreck. We've become enamored by some of the ridiculous. I'll be the first to admit, it is definitely entertaining.
I'm quick to remember a movie by the name of Idiocracy. It's a Mike Judge movie that has an eerie but funny prophetic message. A man from our time gets put in a time capsule. He is then not awaken for 500 years. When he comes to, the world around him has become so dumb that he wakes up the smartest person on the face of the planet. Everyone has become so dumbed down by some entertainment that the Oscar winner in that year was just a short film of butt cheeks that farted every now and again.
Sure, Mike Judge's 500 year outlook may be a little extreme. Looking at what we find value in today, it may not be too terribly far fetched. Charlie Sheen has the fastest growing Twitter audience in existence. Heck, I even follow him (and I am a fan of 2 1/2 Men). However, his tweets make absolutely no cognitive sense really except for the words #winning and #tigerblood. He yields a lot of online influence and is even hiring interns to fuel the viral flame.
I know there's several groups rallying for an "unfollow Charlie Sheen" day in an effort to fight the absurdity. As well intended as these efforts may be, I don't see them as effective. Rallying people to collectively unfollow someone builds that individual that much more publicity for them instead of accomplishing the alternative. When you get down to it, the most effective way to ignore someone isn't to call someone out or publicly denounce them - it's indifference. Indifference can do more damage than any cause or collective action in this sort of scenario.
Which is why this post isn't about Charlie Sheen.
The trailer to Idiocracy, just so you have a better visual of what I'm talking about
- Why Charlie Sheen was fired (insidetv.ew.com)
- Charlie Sheen's Ustream show gets more than 100,000 viewers (hointervention.com)
- Charlie Sheen Doesn't Write His Own Twitter!! (perezhilton.com)