Thursday, October 2, 2008

the post that may lose me some friends....

i have never really liked her. i've always been leery of her power and persuasion. years ago, i ran across this article that made me think about why people watch her show. the article claims that the oprah show stresses people out, however, it could be that people who are stressed gravitate toward her show. does watching it give them hope? solace? a solution?

a few months ago there was an email going around that was "so shocking!" i watched the video and was like, "who cares?" (if you want to see it...)

why? should i, as a woman, wife and mother, CARE about what oprah thinks about religion and God? why should it be shocking to me? when i look for spiritual guidance, my TV set is the last place i go (unless it's conference weekend). i look to my church, the clergy and the scriptures. just like when i need to make a decision about a political candidate, i listen to them directly and to educated people of the political arena, instead of watching the media or hollywood and other sources that have NO political background. (like why does brooke shields tell me what kind of toothpaste i should buy? shouldn't i ask my dentist? this of course is a whole other arena of conversation.... sorry for the tangent) i thought it was extremely ironic that my church girlfriends were forwarding this "shocking" email about oprah's religious views. seriously, i could care less.

the reason for this post is because i saw a teaser yesterday for the oprah show. and thought, hmmm, that looks interesting, so i tivo'd it. it was about a woman, who in her hectic life, left her 2 yr old daughter in the car all day and totally spaced it. the little girl died... it was horrible! my heart went out to this woman because i see how it is totally possible to do this. just yesterday i almost left mason in the car while taking other kids into the school for an hour. he was being so quiet and as i was locking and shutting the doors after the last kid got out i heard little mason say, "mommy, don't leave me here!" i don't know how long it would have been until i remembered he was there, had he not said anything! so, i totally felt for this woman and even shed a tear, like "this could have been me!"

second half of the show, she had on a bunch of "overwhelmed" mothers just whining and complaining about how hard it is to be a mom. she even set up a hot line for women to call in and whine. then to help the women, she had this zen meditation guy... i'm like, "what does he know about being a mother?" at the end of the show, it was wrapped up by placing a lot of blame on the men. women need to get their husbands to do more, so we dont have to be so stressed all the time.

i turned off the TV and thought.... i work 2 jobs and have 3 young boys. my husband works 2 jobs and goes to school. i'm not stressed. there are stressful moments, but i can usually turn it around. i thought, this is exactly what's wrong, we ask too much of the men. husbands do so much more for wives now than they ever did! we should be thanking them, not asking them to do more! and if our lives are hectic and overwhelming, only we can fix that. i also believe that women should not work outside the home. (i realized that this isn't always possible) but i do see people that have lots of toys (like boats, nice cars, and even airplanes) who claim that mom HAS to work. people are too materialistic (okay i'm one of them!) and have priorities out of whack and i felt like that oprah segment just tried to justify all of that.

i know that oprah platform a lot of times is to educate the public on the atrocities of our world and society. my only response to these episodes are "i know bad things happen in the world, but i don't need to bring them into my home everyday. my times is much better served leaving the TV off and playing play-doh with my kids."

i must also give oprah some kudos... she has done wonderful things for people all over the world. she is an advocate for many good causes. i do not think that she is the anti-christ, i do not think she's evil, but i do think that she has way too much pull on society, especially the women! i also don't like how she uses her power and money as a political platform. what does oprah know about how to run a country? or who should be president? she's a talk show host with no relevant education and way too many contradicting ideas in her overflowing mind. (sorry, obviously i'm no obama supporter, but i'm not a mccain supporter either!)

i have many friends that love oprah and will continue to do so. they are still my friends and i love them dearly. we all have our vices (i'd much rather eat some good brownies, therefore i'm
gluttonous!) for me, i just choose to not watch the oprah show... and this is why.....


Spencer G said...

I think the real problem is that this "whine forum" creates the idea that realities of life are problems, big, solution-needing problems. Then all these people afflicted with life--modern life--become patients in need of help. Then she sells this image of a life where every moment of non-happiness, non-comfort, or non-joy is percieved as a problem to which her views and image of the modern american woman become the perscription.

This vilification of anything that's hard or causes any level of distress rejects what life is and subscribes to--as you correctly identified--a materialistic life where it is possible to illiminate even the need to negotiate with your spouse how hot the car should be, or which your children what you should or should not watch on TV etc.

So, it's kind of like Cosmopolitan, or any other fashion magazine, but instead of making you uncomfortable with your body, she makes you uncomfortable with your life.

But hooray for getting everyone to read Faulkner, Oprah!

Becky said...

Wait! Did you write this blog or did I? I feel exactly the same on every point. Interesting.

Sometimes I think everyone that was raised in the San Jose 15th ward was raised by the same parents as me because we seem to think and live so similarly. Maybe it's the faith or maybe it's that all of our parents raised us, collectively...thank goodness. I wish the world wasn't so big so we could all get together. Sheesh!

PS - I love reading your blog.

flip flop mama said...

I can't remember the last time I watched Oprah. I can't stand to listen to her. I like what you and Spencer G said. She has way too much pull on society and has created a bunch of needy women. I am always surprised when I hear that Oprah was quoted in RS...she's a talk show host people! Anyway, I'll totally still be your friend! I feel the same way!

Sandy said...

I have said for years, (ask my children)Oprah is a devil-woman a.k.a. anti-Christ. She has too much influence on women who do not have a mind of their own.
I often came away from watching her show hearing that what ever you want is okay because it is your life. Booooo.

Parkin Family said...

OK- When I first started staying home (not working) I did start to watch the "Oprah" show and I stopped watching because it did stress me out. I have enough drama and don't need to watch other people's. If there is something I want to get informed about like the election I will go and get the information myself from creditable sources! AMEN Sister!

Julie J. said...

I totally agree. I used to watch. But she really does have anti marriage undertones. She tries to give parenting advice, relationship advice and spiritual advice and really, what qualifications does she have to do this? Because she is RICH?
People, if your life is overwhelming you - don't complain about it on TV. Simplify! Cut back! Drop the second job and the fancy cars. Drive something smaller to less places. Take your kids out of all their activities. They don't need soccer, and piano, and art lessons, and cubscouts,on top of all their homework. Cut it down and take a leisurly family walk in the evening. For sure your kids will run and get exercise and you will all go home more relaxed instead of wired. And if your so busy and stressed, how do you have time to waste watching Oprah?

RHS said...

amen, girl! i too have been calling oprah a "false god" for years...she's a modern day "idol" to pull people away from our true God. i was going to to say...i bet your friend spencer loved this post and then i noticed he was the first to comment. i think he did his english master's thesis on oprah. i don't care what oprah or any other celebrity believes w/ regards to religions, politics or anything else. who cares? and why do they think any of us really care what they believe? i will give oprah credit for being generous with her money...she does do a lot of good w/ it.

Sandy said...

Julie J, I can't beleive you mentioned Cub Scouts in the ellimination column.

KATE said...

Emily~ you're too funny and definitely have NOT lost me as a friend in this!!!!
I, like you, have never been an Oprah watcher & can totally relate to that poor woman who lost her child, it could happen to anyone. We are all so busy and life is hectic, but you're right it's what we have made it.
My brother in law once said of both Oprah and Dr. Phil ~ that they just ruin marriages! It was so funny at the time he said it, and I think of that everytime I see their faces on anything. My brother in law said that they get the women all riled up during the day about how horrible their "relationships" are, or how little their husbands are doing, so that these poor unsuspecting men are walking into a fire at the end of the day. I can see that happening.
Sorry, I went off for a minute~ bottom line is I loved the post and totally one hundred percent agree!!

KATE said...

Go Spencer, great comments!

Jamilla said...

Emily,I couldn't agree with you more, personally I have never gotten into the whole Oprah thing. I loved your comments.

Barbara said...

Amen, Emily! (and Spencer too.)