In one of the best pieces ever published on The Daily Beast, Jodie Foster takes a public stand in support of Kristen Stewart, something no other famous person has done. Her essay is not just about Stewart but about herself, and what kind of savage beast we the public have morphed into. We are No Name in Spirited Away, seemingly harmless; we love our celebrities until that moment comes where we must eat them alive. And before long, we are eating everything in sight until we can barely walk. It is repulsive to watch if you are my age and you remember a time when it was not like this. “They can take it,” you might think. “After all, no one asked them to be famous.” It isn’t about them; it’s about us. We have sunk to a collective low. Even as Foster writes so eloquently about the topic of destruction of self – the commenters immediately jump in “you are absolving her of her SIN!!!!” They not only miss the point completely, and see themselves as the moral authority on what is right and what is wrong, but they use it as yet another opportunity to devour every living piece that’s left. Really? No other cause worth fighting for? I have a long list if you’re interested.
My mother had a saying that she doled out after every small injustice, every heartbreak, every moment of abject suffering. “This Too Shall Pass.” God, I hated that phrase. It always seemed so banal and out of touch, like she was telling me my pain was irrelevant. Now it just seems quaint, but oddly true … Eventually this all passes. The public horrors of today eventually blow away. And yes, you are changed by the awful wake of reckoning they leave behind. You trust less. You calculate your steps. You survive. Hopefully in the process you don’t lose your ability to throw your arms in the air again and spin in wild abandon. That is the ultimate F.U. and–finally–the most beautiful survival tool of all. Don’t let them take that away from you.
Still hungry? I’m sure there are plenty more wide-eyed starlets out there waiting. They better watch themselves. They better not become hated by the hungry beast. Sometimes it isn’t even anything they’ve done. Sometimes it’s just because it was their turn.