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Celebrities and Politics - Debate Circle

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Previous Entry Celebrities and Politics Sep. 2nd, 2008 @ 10:14 pm
Wow, this community hasn't been used in almost two years!

Anyway, this is mainly just my curiosity because I don't think I know enough about the subject. But what do you guys think about celebrities and their voice about politics. I saw and article today stating that Anne Hathaway was going to campaign for Obama despite her breakup or whatever (OMG! That's so cool...um okay). But do you think celebrities should be able to influence people in how they vote?

Also an unrelated question, but people are being urged to vote so much now a days, but if voting is a right, isn't also someone's right not to vote? Is it right or fair to guilt someone into voting?
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Date:September 3rd, 2008 05:47 am (UTC)
I do worry if anyone's deciding on a particular candidate just because their favorite actor/actress supports them. Then again, if someone's going to do that, they probably wouldn't make an informed voting decision either way, so I'm not sure it makes a big difference.

I admit I'm always a little pleased when I see an actor I like/respect campaigning for the candidate I want to vote for. And I do think it's very respectable when a celebrity uses their influence to encourage people to vote, and to make informed votes.

I do think it's someone's right not to vote, and if they're really not at all informed, I'd honestly rather they didn't vote, than vote haphazardly on a whim or based on something trivial. I am obviously a big proponent of education in general...be it on politics, science, the environment, etc. so I think there's nothing "unfair" about trying to explain to people why it is important for them to care...but at the same time, if they really don't care, pressuring them into forming an opinion just to form an opinion, without doing the background research, is problematic.
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Date:September 3rd, 2008 06:46 am (UTC)
But what if their avoidance of voting has nothing to do with a lack of knowledge? I don't really understand it, but I have a cousin who is very informed, and at one point (it might have changed) he wouldn't vote because of his beliefs. I'm not sure what exactly they were, if he was against the electoral system, or the 2 party system but he was protesting in his own way (which in a way is dumb because if you're unhappy about something in the United States in theory one should vote to counteract it). In that scenario is someone 'bad' for not voting? The media often portrays a voter as good and a non-voter as bad, and people (including me) tried to influence my cousin to vote? Is that fair?
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Date:September 4th, 2008 04:26 am (UTC)
I think that portrayal is because the majority of non-voters are not voting due to apathy. It's not usually looked down upon to abstain from an activity you object to if you have reasons. Laziness is what is being scorned, ingratitude for something many people still can't do/don't have.
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