Occasionally, stupid, entitled and naïve people need a dose of reality in their lives. Sometimes, that reality comes in a harsh form. For former teen actress and current pop diva singer and lyricist Ariana Grande, her wake-up call came suddenly and violently to her and over seventy of her young fans during her concert last week at the Manchester Arena in the form of a terrorist suicide bombing. As the concert ended and her fans were exiting the arena, identified terrorist 22-year old Salmin Abedi exploded his suicide vest, killing himself, 23 others and critically wounding over fifty people; many of them small children.
So, who is Ariana Grande and why am I writing about her? Normally, I could care less about the life of pop singer whose music I don’t listen to. But in Ms. Grande’s case I’ll make an exception because her unique experience last week provides one of life’s lessons that should be shared.
For those of you not familiar with Ariana Grande, she is a 23-year old young woman born in Boca Raton, Florida of parents of Italian decent. She began an acting career on Broadway in 2008 in the role of Charlotte. She then moved on to star in Nickelodeon’s Victorious in 2010. Ms. Grande gained fame as a singer songwriter with her debut album “Yours Truly” in 2013 and never looked back. She has since been described as the heir apparent to older singing diva Mariah Carey.
On Independence Day weekend back in 2015, Grande gained negative notoriety when she was secretly video recorded licking donuts in a display case while remarking to her friends, “I hate America and I hate Americans.” Unfortunate for Ms. Grande, the video went viral and she was soon forced to make a public apology about her offensive comments. I watched her apology and found it to be a shallow and insincere response indicating that she was only sorry about getting caught.
Ariana Grande typifies many youthful hypocritical entertainers in her industry who make a sizable and luxurious living in a country they despise. Ms. Grande is talented, selfish, self-serving and entitled. A person who was born in America, she has profited by our environment filled with endless opportunities for advancement and wealth. Yet. she hates her country and the foolish and uninformed Americans to financially support her.
So, fast forward to Manchester, England this past week and the terrorist bombing at Grande’s concert. Literally in an instant, scores of her young fans’ lives were destroyed by death and maiming. Families were torn asunder by unspeakable and senseless violence. The self-important America-hater Ariana Grande is suddenly struck square in the face with the dark specter of terrorist violence against a free people. A horrendous, mindless manifestation of malevolence. The classic struggle between good and evil that President Trump recently spoke about last week in Saudi Arabia.
In short, singer and pop culture diva Grande was smacked square in the face with the “context” of exactly what she would face daily if she didn’t live in America. And just like the hypocrite she is, where did she run to for safety? Back into arms of mommy and daddy in, you guessed it – America. Interesting, but not unexpected given her profile.
Ms. Grande is apparently so distraught and concerned about her personal safety, that she has cancelled all future concerts of her Dangerous Woman tour in London, Belgium, Poland, Germany and Switzerland until after June 5th. I have found that pretty much the only way hypocrites like Grande are really affected by the realities of life is when they are physically or financially threatened.
Whether Ariana Grande’s life and her feelings for her native land will ultimately be changed because of her close call with terrorism remains to be seen. However, she now possesses something important that she had been previously insulated from – the context of what true evil looks and feels like and the security of living in a truly free society comprised of those of us who stand watch 24/7 to fight that evil.
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