PDA

View Full Version : WTF! - The U.N., 'Battlestar' Troops Talk Ethics Of War



PoliCon
03-28-2009, 11:04 AM
At The U.N., 'Battlestar' Troops Talk Ethics Of War

by Lara Pellegrinelli


All Things Considered, March 20, 2009 Over the past five years on television, there's been a rigorous, messy, emotional exploration of important questions facing our country and the world — questions about torture, religious fundamentalism, resistance and genocide.

We're not talking about Frontline. Or Nightline. This is Battlestar Galactica, the SciFi channel's brooding, often brutal re-imagining of the cheesy '70s-vintage series.

SNIP

To mark the show's finale, its fans at the United Nations — people whose nonfictional jobs involve wrestling with similar issues day in and day out — invited the cast and producers to visit the U.N. for a two-hour panel discussion and talk-back.

On Tuesday, some 500 people took seats in the chamber, a stiff, formal space with miles of dull, blonde wood. (Delegates have come from some exotic-sounding, faraway places to the U.N. building in Manhattan, but it was probably the first time they were there representing other planets.)

Whoopi Goldberg, a UNICEF ambassador as well as an Oscar-winning actor, served as the panel's moderator. U.N. representatives joined actors Edward James Olmos, who played the commander of the show's title warship, and Mary McDonnell, who starred as President Laura Roslin, his civilian superior. Ron Moore and fellow BSG executive producer David Eick also sat on the panel.

CONTINUED (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102205790) SERIOUSLY! WTF!?? Being on a TV show makes you qualified to speak on war??? I mean don't get me wrong - but the egotism of hollywood makes me wanna PUKE!:mad::mad::mad:

Speedy
04-05-2009, 01:36 PM
SERIOUSLY! WTF!?? Being on a TV show makes you qualified to speak on war??? I mean don't get me wrong - but the egotism of hollywood makes me wanna PUKE!:mad::mad::mad:

The values and stances taken by the characters in Battlestar Galactica, the viewa of the actors who played them and the views of creator Ron Moore are a lot more conservative than who you would expect to show up at the UN.

Battlestar Galactica during it's run mirrored alot of real world issues and always took the conservative side.

megimoo
04-05-2009, 01:52 PM
The values and stances taken by the characters in Battlestar Galactica, the viewa of the actors who played them and the views of creator Ron Moore are a lot more conservative than who you would expect to show up at the UN.

Battlestar Galactica during it's run mirrored alot of real world issues and always took the conservative side.Expect more from the liberal media especially in light of Obamas' anti Capitalism and pro socialistic actions.They will go 'full bore' on our patriotic duty to obey the 'one' in all things.The UN has a vested interest in supporting Obasma's agenda and will also propagandize their messages into support for these White House Idiots !

PoliCon
04-05-2009, 11:50 PM
The values and stances taken by the characters in Battlestar Galactica, the viewa of the actors who played them and the views of creator Ron Moore are a lot more conservative than who you would expect to show up at the UN.

Battlestar Galactica during it's run mirrored alot of real world issues and always took the conservative side.

Yes but none of that makes them experts on the issues.

Speedy
04-06-2009, 01:07 AM
Yes but none of that makes them experts on the issues.

I would rather have non-experts with Conservatives like Edward James Olmos and Richard Hatch before the UN than idiots like Sean Penn.

PoliCon
04-06-2009, 10:18 AM
I would rather have non-experts with Conservatives like Edward James Olmos and Richard Hatch before the UN than idiots like Sean Penn.

"stars" should not be invited to address people like they are experts PERIOD.

Odysseus
04-06-2009, 11:00 AM
"stars" should not be invited to address people like they are experts PERIOD.

This has been an ongoing trend. Remember when they had the farm aid hearings and Jessica Lange addressed congress? It's a symptom of our culture's inability to separate fantasy from reality and the subsequent elevation of fantasy over reality, since fantasy is always more attractive. Unfortunately, reality will not be denied and has a habit of intruding on fantasy at the most inopportune times. 9/11 was a perfect example of that.

noonwitch
04-06-2009, 12:52 PM
"stars" should not be invited to address people like they are experts PERIOD.


It depends on the star and the issue. Jenny McCarthy, who I never found to be very funny, is a great spokeswoman for autism, as she has a child who has been diagnosed with it. If the issue is something that has had profound impact on the star's life, then that issue has a face for the public to recognize, and maybe send some donations toward charities working on the cause in question.

Danny Kaye and Audrey Hepburn were both great ambassadors through the United Nations, in their times.

Odysseus
04-06-2009, 01:24 PM
It depends on the star and the issue. Jenny McCarthy, who I never found to be very funny, is a great spokeswoman for autism, as she has a child who has been diagnosed with it. If the issue is something that has had profound impact on the star's life, then that issue has a face for the public to recognize, and maybe send some donations toward charities working on the cause in question.
Jenny McCarthy isn't speaking as a star, but as an expert. She didn't play the mother of a child with autism in a movie, she actually has a child with autism and has written a book on the subject, which gives her real insights into the issues. Jessica Lange played a farmer in a movie, but has never actually farmed anything, therefore she was unqualified to address congress on the issues of farming. George Clooney's role as a TV doctor doesn't qualify him to address health care reform. Martin Sheen's role as president doesn't mean that he understands the issues confronting the president. Sean Penn's performance as a mentally retarded man doesn't mean... Okay, I'll give you that one, but you get my point. One can no more expect Katie Sackhoff to be able to speak intelligently on war than you should expect Charton Heston to be able to part the Red Sea in real life.

Danny Kaye and Audrey Hepburn were both great ambassadors through the United Nations, in their times.
Yes, but if there's any example of a pretense of action superceding real action, it's the UN. Had either of them been ambassadors to actual nations, or even been the US ambassadors to the UN, as Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Jeanne Kirpatrick or John Bolton had been I'd concede your point, but being the spokesmodel for an organization that does nothing but talk anyway is just more acting.

This isn't a diatribe against actors taking positions on issues. Every citizen has the right to speak out, no matter what their position or experience. An actor's lack of insight doesn't disqualify him from having an opinion, however well or ill-informed it may be. What I object to is that we, as a culture, are losing the capacity to distinguish between those who play at being heroes in front of a camera and those are are heroes in real life. We accept the word of actors in areas where they have no expertise and assume that they know what they are talking about because their roles seem to address the experties needed. I'd sooner have the writers on the panel, but even that fails to address the idiocy of this. The world is full of experts on the morality of conflict. There are literally millions of Soldiers who have served in combat who can speak from personal experience. There are heads of state who can discuss the implications of decisions that they have made and the ethical fallout that resulted. There are real victims who can testify to the morality those who exercised power over them during conflict, but given the multitudes of people who can speak with genuine conviction based on experience to this issue, the UN has chosen to let a bunch of actors tell us about war, based on their having pretended to fight a fantasy war against a fantasy enemy in outer space.

This is frakkin' idiocy.

hampshirebrit
04-06-2009, 03:57 PM
The values and stances taken by the characters in Battlestar Galactica, the viewa of the actors who played them and the views of creator Ron Moore are a lot more conservative than who you would expect to show up at the UN.

Battlestar Galactica during it's run mirrored alot of real world issues and always took the conservative side.

Exactly right.

The text of the referenced NPR article echoes this viewpoint quite well. This is not just another bunch of Hollywood luvvies grandstanding a leftist point of view, far from it.

hampshirebrit
04-06-2009, 04:12 PM
The UN has chosen to let a bunch of actors tell us about war, based on their having pretended to fight a fantasy war against a fantasy enemy in outer space.

Hardly. For one thing, the NPR article clearly says that the cast members were invited by their fans in the UN to mark the finale of the show, and to discuss the show, not to discuss war per se. Obviously this was not a formal UN session, but an informal, unfunded event.

The sort of faux outrage on this issue more properly belongs over at DU.

Odysseus
04-06-2009, 05:24 PM
Hardly. For one thing, the NPR article clearly says that the cast members were invited by their fans in the UN to mark the finale of the show, and to discuss the show, not to discuss war per se. Obviously this was not a formal UN session, but an informal, unfunded event.

The sort of faux outrage on this issue more properly belongs over at DU.

Nothing faux about it. The UN is constantly complaining about how cash-strapped it is (but still manages to find money for conferences in five-star resorts), and how overworked they are, but they find time and money to organbize a chat about a TV show? Remember that they flew a bunch of actors in on your dime the next time there's a debate about the use of UN dues. And the headline specified that it was about the ethics of war, something that the cast and crew have little direct knowledge of. Once again, this is fantasy winning over reality. If that doesn't outrage you, then it should.