Earlier today someone, somewhere, said something stupid. People saying stupid things isn’t all that unusual, so one might question this story’s newsworthiness, but this particular someone made a guest appearance on the Lone Ranger back in the 1960s. So this was a celebrity someone!
Celebrities saying something stupid isn’t unusual either, but this was a left or right wing celebrity, which made this a political event, so, of course, the right or left wing media had to cover it!
In addition, today’s event is just the latest in a trend which makes it doubly newsworthy. Observers aren’t sure when making big of small started, but some trace it to 1992, when a Vice President made international news for adding a “e” to the end of “potato.” Historians say it goes further back still, with literary references to “making much ado about nothing” appearing as long ago as 1598 or 1599.
Whatever its origin, the trend has only grown in recent years with Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter dramatically increasing opportunities for making public mistakes. In addition social media allows regular folk to join hands with the media in broadcasting these minor matters. It is only by sharing and reposting and really working together that we can alert the world to whenever someone somewhere says something stupid.
Or…we can focus our energies and our outrage on issues that actually matter.