It’s no question that celebrities have a large influence on the public. With much of the media jumping on the opportunity to let us all know about what celebrities are saying, wearing, eating, doing, or giving birth to, it creates an opportunity for people who look up to these celebrities to mirror them if desired. While many of the repercussions of these actions may seem minute, the actual effect of what celebrities do and how we follow can be alarming.
This political season has already shaped up to be an interesting and historical chain of events. With the democratic frontrunners still battling on, trying to pick up support and votes wherever they can, it calls into question how much of an effect there is when a celebrity endorses a presidential candidate.
Chuck Norris may be the sole reason why former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee even had a shot in the Republican race. According to the Associated Content, the week after Norris cast his support for Huckabee, searches for Huckabee on Yahoo rose 457%.
Last December, Oprah Winfrey endorsed Barack Obama in his run for the White House. With Oprah being one of the most influential people in America, how much of an advantage is this giving Obama in his campaign? Jennifer Aniston, Will Smith, and George Clooney also support Obama.
Hillary Clinton has the support of Rosie O’Donnell, Madonna, Janet Jackson, and Barbara Streisand.
It makes sense that if political awareness in America is on the decline, celebrity endorsements could do a lot to turn around a candidate’s campaign. It would be good news for the candidate who wants the ignorant voter’s vote, one who has no idea what the issues are and where the presidential candidates stand behind them.
The 2004 presidential election reportedly received around 121 million votes between George Bush and John Kerry; comparatively, American Idol received a record 97.5 million votes this last season in the finale. Despite the fact that with American Idol someone can vote more than once, it’s still alarming how much attention this television program receives. Assuredly there are many eligible voters who know more about the contestants on American Idol than the presidential candidates.
In reality, celebrities really are not that much smarter than the general public. In fact, many of them are more stupid.
Regardless of celebrities’ knowledge of what is really going on, think for yourself, get informed, stop being a drone, and act on your own personal opinion. Otherwise this presidential race is going to become even more of a popularity contest, with more focus being taken away from issues that actually matter.