Celebrities and Criminals

Celebrities and criminals are the last acceptable targets for shame displacement.

 Marilyn Monroe, a celebrity who was adored but treated very, very badly.

Marilyn Monroe, a celebrity who was adored but treated very, very badly.

We can vilify, slander, demean and denigrate celebrities without bringing down the wrath of even the most adamant enforcer of political correctness. Celebrities are considered titanium shells that can withstand any amount of stonings without a dent because they are famous and wealthy and often good-looking. They have become objects rather than people. Marilyn Monroe expressed her sense of this when she said, "People talk to me if they they were talking to my clothes."

 Benjamin Rush was a signer of the Constitution, and a doctor. He believed that punishment and incarceration only made people more likely to reoffend. 

Benjamin Rush was a signer of the Constitution, and a doctor. He believed that punishment and incarceration only made people more likely to reoffend. 

The other group undefended by the politically correct are criminals. We see this in the brutal way we treat offenders, our manner of plea-bargaining to free up courtrooms, our overcrowding of prisons and our use of solitary confinement, sometimes lasting for decades. Criminals are objects that that come down the assembly line damaged; it is cheaper and more expedient to throw them away than to try to repair them. While voices protesting our style of incarceration, punishment and retributive justice date back to Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signers of the constitution, they have begun to gain in number and loudness only recently.  

So this indifference to suffering of others occurs at both ends of the status ladder, the very top and the very bottom. It is a characteristic of Guilt-based societies. Shame-based societies are kinder to their celebrities and criminals. Consider this article from the Guardian, Why is Sweden Closing its Prisons?