August 30, 2004

Booing the Kerry daughters?

I saw on Drudge last night that Vanessa and Alexandra Kerry were booed at the MTV Video Music Awards, so I set the TiVo to record the repeat presentation of the show during the night. Fastforwarding this morning, I saw that Jon Stewart was also on the show, so I kept an eye out for his appearance too. His spot preceded the Kerry kids, and I stopped to take a look. Piped in from the New York set of "The Daily Show," he did his trademark comic sputterings as he carried out his role of inviting viewers to vote for the Viewer's Choice Award. This little performance had many points where a "Daily Show" audience would have laughed a lot, but the hall itself--in Florida--was completely unresponsive.

I don't think this audience was the political type. So, it isn't really surprising that the crowd did not enjoy having its fun interrupted for a public service message about how important it is for young people to vote. It might not have been a particular dislike of Kerry or his daughters, I think, because the Bush daughters were also introduced and they appeared on a large video screen at the same time. But the Kerry daughters are significantly older, and they took a long time sashaying in high heels down a staircase before Vanessa began to speak, which she did ploddingly, in the political manner. Then Barbara and Jenna Bush spoke. They were dressed in a much more youthful, hip way, and they read the teleprompter the way an average person would read a teleprompter, stiffly. I don't think they were aware of the audience response. Then Alexandra, who looked incredibly sad, spoke. It must have been awful for them, because the whole thing went on for a long time, yet they knew from the outset that the audience did not want to hear from them at all. It's really MTV's fault for stopping the party for a public service message (which was repeated later in the show by the thuddingly unglamorous John Mellencamp).

Vodkapundit has this comment (based on reading Drudge):
There comes a time to, ah, lay politics aside. And that time, uh, comes when hotties are on the stage. And the brunette daughter, whose name I'm sure is either Alexandra or Vanessa, is a hottie.

I'm convinced that at least half of what wrong in politics in this country is due to people too concerned with politics to stop and appreciate the scenery. The Kerry girls (at least the brunette one) deserved better.
Yeah, but you should have seen the rest of the women on that show! I was only fastforwarding, but the Kerry daughters were much less attractive that the extremely glamorous, glitzy women that filled the rest of the show. By the way, I think Alexandra (the brunette one) looks like Laura Nyro. But women in music today, at least the ones on MTV, are not like the music women back in Nyro's day. And the political theme doesn't seem to fit as well with the music either.

You could conclude that it's a shame that these young people today don't care about politics, but that's not the impression I got. I think it's politically savvy to reject an attempt to usurp a music party for a political purpose. It's a solid political opinion to believe that politics don't belong everywhere.

UPDATE: A reader astutely connects the VMA booing with the booing that Hillary Clinton endured when she appeared on stage at the "Concert for New York." Like the VMA show on MTV, that concert, on VH-1, was a Viacom event.

Some people see a gathered throng as an opportunity, and it's a good thing for them to learn that individuals who become a throng for one reason do not appreciate being treated like a general-purpose throng. Note: I'm still mad about the 9/11 Memorial at the University of Wisconsin that drew 20,000 people to the Library Mall three days after the attacks. Appallingly, the speakers harangued us about war and racism, subject matter which, if announced, would have drawn virtually no crowd on that day.

ANOTHER UPDATE: A reader sends this link to a beautiful Laura Nyro page. I've linked to that in the past and should have remembered it. So go there and see if you agree that Alexandra Kerry looks like Laura Nyro, or just forget about Alexandra Kerry and discover or rediscover what a brilliant and beautiful artist Laura Nyro was. I especially love the album "New York Tendaberry."

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