Celebrities are human beings.
That is something we all know, right? They might present themselves at times as something above human, or superhuman, but they are just human beings. They snore and burp and fall and make stupid mistakes just like all of us do.
There are many people I admire for their talents. Russell Crowe, for example, is a fantastic actor. I love most of his work. There are also musicians, like German guitar player Michael Schenker, who transport me to places with their music. I appreciate their work as artists.
But that doesn’t mean I want to follow their advice.
A reader recently asked me why, as a guitar player, I didn’t follow the advice of anti-vaccination guitar slinger Eric Clapton. I will admit this left me very perplexed. Sure, old Slow Hand – as he is called – is a fine guitar player. He has made some brilliant music and is a solid Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.
But that doesn’t mean I will take advice from him. I take my COVID-19 advice from scientists and doctors, not a guitar player with zero medical training. He is simply not qualified to tell me what to do when it comes to my health.
While I admire Crowe, he has been a famously hot-headed jerk on occasion, so I won’t be looking to him for life lessons. Schenker? While you may not have heard of him, he is very influential to many guitarists worldwide. But he has also, in the past, been known for being a temperamental wild card who was wholly unreliable. I won’t be taking advice from him.
It is odd to me that people would look to any celebrity from music or movies or TV or art to give them life advice. Sure, they can say things like, “Don’t drink and drive,” or “Stay off drugs, they almost killed me.” That’s fine.
But when they start spouting about science and politics and the free market or whatever, I tend to tune them out. Sure, celebrities have as much right as everyone else to blab about whatever they want. Please, have at it. But that doesn’t mean I will listen to it, even if I agree with them.
People often make fun of so-called liberal celebrities like Sean Penn and Rob Reiner, to name just two. I get it. Hearing people shout down from a lofty height about how we should do things is galling.
The same goes for celebrities from the right – from Motor City Madman Ted Nugent to TV star Tim Allen. I appreciate their work, but I honestly don’t care to hear their political ramblings.
Many of these people barely graduated from high school, so I am not going to consider them experts in medicine or the economy. I am not saying they aren’t smart, but I am saying they don’t have the qualifications that require me to pay attention to their opinions on topics they know little about.
I don’t care if someone feels their heart is in the right place, I don’t have to take them seriously.
One of our problems right now is that we take the voices of people who have money or celebrity status way too seriously. We need to listen to experts. They may say things you might not want to hear, but they are worth listening to, unlike someone who once made a movie or record that you liked.