Thursday, March 21, 2013

Now she’s sorry…

Michelle Shocked has broken two days of silence to say she’s “damn sorry”. Does she mean it? Does it even matter?

I’ll admit that the cynic in me notes that the apology and explanation came after most (10 of 11, last I heard) of her upcoming concert venues had cancelled her shows. So, there’s an obvious need for financial self-preservation here (my first thought was, "Oh, NOW she's sorry!").

But let’s suppose she’s sincere in her remarks—and I have no reason to doubt that she may be sincere—does it even matter? She wrote, “I don't always express myself as clearly as I should.” Obviously! All the more reason she shouldn’t have ventured into that rhertorical territory, trying to, well, what, exactly?

As one of the commenters at the BuzzFeed link above put it:
So she spews homophobic hate quite a bit, but she is just stating opinions that some people in the world have. They aren't her actual opinions… She just wants the world to hear those opinions… kind of like preaching… WTF IS SHE EVEN SAYING I CAN'T EVEN…
Exactly. Her excuse is as rambling and confused as her original outburst was. So, her “I don't always express myself as clearly as I should” isn’t just a huge understatement, it’s an after-the fact excuse that itself isn’t expressed clearly.

For me personally, this changes nothing. As I said two days ago, for me she’s become, basically an item of nostalgia, and really nothing more. You could even say I was basically an “ex-fan” long before this all happened. So, while I won’t be spending any money on her work, that won’t exactly be a sacrifice.

The bigger lesson in this is that when artists treat their fans—their customers—with disrespect, they shouldn’t be surprised when there’s a strong reaction. Nor should they be surprised if that reaction costs them financially. People have a right to react—or to ignore the whole thing if they want to.

I have no idea if Michelle really meant her apology—or even what she was trying to say in it. Maybe if she finds a way to expresses herself more clearly she can win back some of the fans that she’s lost. By the sound of it, she’ll have some time on her hands to do that. This is a case where the fault lies in the star herself.


Roger Green said...

Here's a bit of Michelle Shocked actual audio, March 17 at Yoshi's in San Francisco

Roger Green said...

"I have no idea if Michelle really meant her apology—or even what she was trying to say in it." I'm not even sure what she was trying to say, exactly, in her original remark.