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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Vote For Time Magazine's Person of the Year

Yesterday on Twitter there were a number of tweets about voting for Time magazine's Person of the Year Award. Curious as to who the nominees were, I clicked over to check it out. (You can vote for Time's Person of the Year, too.) To say I was amazed who was in the pool would be understating it.

I didn't have a problem with controversial figures or political leaders from regimes that are not held in a positive light by most of the world. The Person of the Year doesn't have to have a positive impact, just an impact. That's why it was so surprising to see some of the names. Celebrities who did nothing much, athletes who won gold medals, that stunt diver who jumped from space, and a host of others who had me going, huh?

The Olympic athletes are nice stories. I'm thrilled for them and their victories, but none of them really impacted much of anything outside their sport.

Then there's the singer who wrote a song for the Obama campaign. Um, yeah and? Oh, wait, he became a father this year, too. Clearly that puts him on the Person of the Year list because no one's ever been a father before-- Oh, wait. Maybe it's because no one ever wrote a political song before. Oh, wait, didn't a bunch of singers from the late 60s write a bunch of those types of songs?

Then there's the stuntman who jumped from what? 100,000 feet? Clearly, doing something like that must be worth Person of the Year even though he didn't impact anything except his wallet. I thought this was a ridiculous waste of news space while it was happening--Discovery News even live tweeted the thing for heaven's sake!--but person of the year is beyond ridiculous. That would be like putting Evel Knievel up for the award.
There were other choices that had me going, what the hell were y'all thinking???

There were also some choices that I thought were very good. Like the girl who lived in a pro Taliban area, but wanted the chance to go to school and get an education. She became a voice, and because the Taliban didn't like her message, a gunman got on her school bus, sought her out, and shot her in the head. She survived.

Or the duo from Myanmar who are trying to make things better for a country that had 50 years of brutal military rule. That's noteworthy and that's doing something that has more impact than jumping from space. This pair is having an impact on some 56 million people.

There are other political leaders on the least, some having a negative impact, some positive, but each far stronger candidates than the pop culture figures also put on this list.

Ultimately, Time's editors will pick their Person of the Year and I very much doubt that the voting will sway them. I just wish that the field to vote on only had candidates who deserved to be on there even if they are leaders of totalitarian regimes.