The Ferguson Effect...
15 Minutes Of Fame|
April 21, 2008
Andy Warhol famously opined that everyone would eventually experience their own
"15 minutes" of fame. Little did he know that, like a drug, having once experienced
15 minutes of fame, many people would become addicted. And with the growth of 24/7
news cycles, many others would go to desperate lengths to achieve their own 15 minutes
of fame, by any means.
Take Yale student, Aliza Schvarts, who is currently enjoying her very own 15 minutes,
reveling in the controversy sparked by her desperate bid for relevance. She concocted
an art project guaranteed to shock an already shell-shocked nation. No mean feat.
And it worked. It trumped the video-taped beatings of children posted on the net by other children. It trumped public non-sex performed by teen tramps on their willing boyfriends
(?) and even beat out the nude pics those same teen tramps circulated on the net in
hopes of becoming as famous as Britney.
Those kids might want to take a lesson from a cool college girl. They've been moved
to page 18, while Aliza Schvarts hogs the national spotlight. Her accomplishment?
She devised an
'art project' which involved supposedly inseminating herself with random
sperm via a turkey baster. She then took various herbs, which she labeled 'abortion
inducing' and included a video of herself bleeding in her bathtub, with what she claimed
was post-abortion blood. She then sent out a press release and sat back to enjoy the fruits of her provocative,
That this project was a giant hoax is not relevant. What matters is that Aliza is
convinced she has sparked a national debate on the link between art and the human
body, a vital issue. She is now "someone."
Unfortunately, Aliza has to share the spotlight with another university student,
who also had the ingenuity to label his own assault on propriety as "art". This zany student decided
to desecrate American flags by placing them on the ground, in a scientific inquiry
to see how many Americans would walk on them. Another vital question, no doubt,
and one assured to focus the national spotlight on him. He has now validated himself.
Or rather, the media has validated him, which is the same thing to him. He, too,
is now "someone".
In their quest for fame, these students fell short in only one area. Timing. How
could they know that former president Carter had picked that same week to reassure
himself that he, also, was still relevant?
Carter is still a world renown mover, shaker and peacemaker, if only in his own
mind. He is reinforced in this faulty presumption by virtue of a Nobel Peace Prize
awarded to him, solely in an effort to undermine George Bush. No matter. Carter
has fallen prey to a phenomenon typical of a man who believes his own press releases.
He might really believe what he says, which makes him dangerous. More so because,
as a former president, he represents the United States in the mind of the murdering
terrorists he is currently courting.
Defying the State Department, Carter is on another of what he labels a 'peace mission'.
This involves holding tea parties with known terrorist group, Hamas. The same Hamas
that has vowed, and continues to vow, to wipe Israel off the face of the map. The
same Hamas that bombed
Israel as they held round two of talks with Carter. Meanwhile, Carter proclaimed
to the world that Israel is responsible
for starving Gaza's Palestinians.
Carter, like many on the left, willfully ignores 25 years of reality, as he continues
to claim that the solution to terrorism is, you guessed it, dialogue. No matter
that Hamas officials said Wednesday that Jimmy Carter's meetings with them will boost their legitimacy. No matter that one could
credibly claim that Carter's appeasement policies while president directly contributed
to the terrorism we are now fighting. Facts don't really matter.
What matters is that an old, egotistical, narcissist who was arguably America's
worst president gets to regain his rightful place on the world stage. He is still
relevant. At least in his own mind.
Ah, the fickle finger of fame. Once experienced, its like a drug. Like little children
who cry out to mom, "Look at me! Look at me!" as they perform a daring feat, these
exhibitionists only make me embarrassed for them. That these two 'artists' spend their
whole lives patterning their actions solely to gain the transient attention
and approval of complete strangers is pretty
pathetic. For Carter, there is no excuse. Exercising his ego at the expense of his
country is unexcuseable.
All three of these shameful creatures are ignorant of one of life's most precious
lessons, that the only approval that matters can not be granted by
others. It must come from within.
Nancy Morgan is a columnist and a news editor for
She lives in South Carolina
Article may be reprinted, with attribution. Bio available on request
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