Should celebrities who break the law be punished more harshly?
Debate Rounds (3)
Round 1: acceptance only
Round 2: Arguments are presented ( with factual evidence and name of source where the evidence was found)
Round 3: Rebuttals (and possibly new arguments)
Young children and teenagers are at a time where they are especially influential. They mimic the actions of their idols, and their favorite characters on TV.(3) When they see celebrities such as Lindsay Lohan drive drunk and be barely punished, kids are shown that driving drunk is OK. Same thing with drugs, a beloved celebrity taking drugs shows children that drugs is OK. Celebrities are barely punished for their acts. You often hear about some celebrity using drugs, but do you hear about them being punished? No.
Celebrities represent the US to people in other countries. If adults and children in other countries see the conduct of American stars...and the lack of punishment, what do they think of America? I have friends in Europe, they are smart people, yet they inevitably get influenced by the media. I have often had to answer questions such as "Is it true that all celebrities in the Us do drugs?" or "I heard that drugs are legal in the Us". All of that is because of a high percentage of drug-addicts celebrities that do not get punished.
Punishing celebrities more harshly would discourage children and teenagers of associating drugs with fame and being "cool". It would also let people outside of the Us see America as a serious country that deals with its problems. It would help people establish the link between drugs and bad.
A lot in times in news, you don't hear the full story. It may seem like Lindsay Lohan has barely gotten punished for her actions, when she really has. News channels don't ever bother to give the boring details, they'll give an exaggerated, watered down version of the story. She has done more than a year in jail time and around 500 hours of community service. She also doesn't act or sing anymore(1). Her actions have taken away her fame. I don't think this would be considered "barely punished".
Instead of punishing the celebrities for children being exposed to this, I think we should put more fault on the parents. Celebrities don't have a say in what kids are exposed to, but parents do. Celebrities are always going to make bad choices, no matter what we do. The parents can create a filter so children aren't exposed to celebrities who are bad role models.
Not only do celebrities get punished legally, they also get punished in their career. Celebrities like Lindsay Lohan and Mel Gibson made bad choices repeatedly. Neither have been in a movie for years. Celebrities should realize their bad actions hurt their career. They get punished more severely than you think. The reason you don't hear about them being punished is because news don't want to present this information. Sometimes, agents will even pay the news channel to not put that information on.
I'm going to quote an article here that mirrors how I feel: "A celebrity is a person famous for his/ her talents and it is the public which gives these well-known personalities that status. For example, when an actor, who has just joined the film industry, manages to get the audience to like his very first movie, his fans enthusiastically put him on a pedestal and start to build expectations. The blunder made here is that these expectations are not always related to the professional abilities of the celebrity. Rather, people turn the celebrities into role models and choose to let a stranger influence their life." (2) I think this is often true for adults who seem to 'worship' certain celebrities.
For these reasons, I don't think celebrities should get punished more severely. Their careers already get damaged and in some cases they lose their job entirely. Parents need to do a better job of deciding what is appropriate for their kids to watch. This is because celebrities will always make bad choices.
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