Thursday, September 23, 2010

Protecting the Sanctity of Sesame Street?

So the bloggers of the Internet can sometimes be very quick to judge and in my opinion, very hypocritical. What do I mean? Well you have probably heard by now that 25-year-old singer Katy Perry was set to appear on an upcoming episode of the children's education program "Sesame Street". If you heard that you probably also heard that she wouldn't be making that appearance due to the number of complaints that the show received about early footage of Perry singing her popular song "Hot 'n Cold" alongside perennial "Sesame Street" star Elmo. In the piece, Perry prances and dances alongside the Muppet while seemingly doing nothing more than simply running around cartoon backgrounds. I say 'seemingly' because apparently I'm too stupid to understand the 'offensive' part of her performance.

Look up any article on the situation and you'll undoubtedly find a lot of the popular opinion on the matter being bandied about in the comments section. Now if there's one thing I dislike about the comments section on many internet pages it's that there's seldom any accountability. I could go onto a website and spout rhetoric about why "Star Wars" is and always will be superior to "Star Trek" and I could sign my name William Shatner and no one would know the difference. Of course I'm not William Shatner but such a posting would undoubtedly bring Trekkers out of the internet woodwork to defend their beloved show. So why am I bringing this up? Because apparently the popular opinion against the Katy Perry segment on "Sesame Street" gained a lot of traction when it was first posted on YouTube.

If you read a lot of what people are saying out there I would say that it's quite hypocritical. I say this because we as a society often seem to apply morals to situation that don't even require us to do such a thing. While I would contend that Katy Perry probably isn't the most wholesome or pure person to have ever appeared on television let alone on "Sesame Street" I think her appearance had more to do with the fact that she liked the show as a kid and wanted to make an appearance on it now that she had finally become a star. I don't find anything offensive in her dance with Elmo and I have faith in the powers that be in charge of "Sesame Street" that they'd have enough judgment to know what was acceptable on the show and what wouldn't be.

If we don't believe them to have that much common sense then what else are they 'allowing' our children to see? If everything else the producers and creators of the show is passed through without anyone else in the general public (and internet public) making a comment on it then why is this one particular piece getting so much bad press? Is it because we think Katy Perry isn't a good person or because we like to believe that we are so much more conservative? I call this type of attitude hypocritical because it has often been the more conservative sections of our society who have stepped out to call something offensive and when you dig a little deeper you find that they themselves are guilty of similar actions. So what does that mean? While they find Katy Perry's dance sequence "offensive" I'm sure they have done something similar (if not worse) in their own lives but I guess pointing it out in regards to someone else gives them a feeling of superiority. I find it to be a shame that a show that was a large part of my youth is treated so shoddily these days by conservative members of the public. Kids are innocent in their outlook. They would see the dance for what it is which is a dance; don't try to look beyond that simple fact to find offense.

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