Must We Tell Stories of Evil Winning?

I’m watching the Republican National Debate and I’m stunned — not by the debate — but the commercials CNN chose to air. There was a commercial about “What if they [the Nazis] won? The commercial begins by showing a beautiful suburban world and ends with “Sieg Heil”. Really? A beautiful, peaceful, suburban White world? In these years of incredible race issues, how does that story — of all the stories out there?

I’m sure there will be conflict and drama and people fighting against the system in the movie, but why does this story need to be told? Why start with the premise? I just don’t get the attraction.

Next, there was another commercial that seemed to make the man who “turned a country to his will” by playing into a drug war. They make it chilling by playing his cigars and violence over an echoing Nancy Reagan saying, “Just say no”.

As anyone who knows me will tell you, I’m not a Reagan fan in any sense of the word and equate Nancy Reagan with Marie Antoinette. Nor do I think we should criminalize a disease that destroys people when we can treat it and change things.

BUT, and this is a big but, saying “no” as an ideal isn’t half bad. The disease is activated by first use. If you don’t use, it lies dormant. Drugs and alcohol destroy lives for any number of reasons. They destroy all parts of people’s lives. They destroy the lives of children and lead to bad thoughts being acted on as impulse control dies. They destroy families and marriages through violence and abuse of all kinds. There is nothing good that comes from addiction, with the possible exception of recovery.

Then there’s the violence, profiteering, gang violence and destruction of others countries covered by this movie. And this is sexy? Again, I don’t get it. I have never understood “The sexy gangster” as hero in a movie. I didn’t understand Edward G. Robinson, I didn’t understand Al Pacino, and I don’t understand this.

I have no respect for people I meet in my office or people I meet in Springfield or Hartford who love these movies. They are going down a path that sucks everyone around them into a living hell. It sounds like hyperbole, but it’s not. It’s my experience.

Watching 12 year old boys who live in their lousy, poor, crime-ridden neighborhood walking around with a “Scarface”  T-Shirt rubs every one of my nerves the wrong way.

Why is this “great crime-lord” a story we want to tell?

By the way, I didn’t like Rosemary’s Baby or The Omen either.  What I question is why we’re fascinated by this. What I question is why the “machine” that funds movies would choose to fund these stories. It’s like propaganda for crime or propaganda for evil. It makes me sick.

I won’t go to these movies and I won’t watch these shows. That said, I don’t want  censorship. I don’t believe in it.  People can make these movies. I just don’t understand why they want to.

Peace,

John

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