Personally, I’m not one for having our National Anthem* messed with. That said, Whitney Houston’s version was the best, the most powerful performance, I’ve ever heard. I was stunned by the voice and what she did with it. I heard it played over a sound system at a cat show in a little town in Indiana. Someone had to tell me who was singing.
The only other performance by her I heard was, I Will Always Love You written by Dolly Parton. I believe that she would be the first to agree with Houston’s version and bask in the talent of another great singer who was singing her - Parton’s - song.
Aside from one anthem and one song, the only other knowledge I have about Whitney Houston is that she was stunning, her beauty and figure, breathtaking. That knowledge was gained by viewing The Bodyguard on television.
Question: During the past few days, why was Whitney Houston treated as a person of state, or at least a heroine? I’ve heard some claim that because she may have died of a drug overdose that her death should have gone - if not entirely unremarked - most certainly not as such a big deal. The cause of her death has nothing to do with how she is remembered. She is one of the ever-increasing drug dead. The poisons apparently ingested by mistake. We’ve been learning about such (mistake) deaths for much too long. Death by self-medication is not new - intentional or unintentional.
There is nothing glamorous about taking recreational drugs, nothing but eventual death arriving via self-medication. The dangers of mistreating prescription drugs seems to increase with every year - or is it every month?
Although I watched no part of what was evidently a three-hour celebration of her life, I’m hard put to recall when a mere celebrity has been so fêted. I did watch the funeral of Presidents of the United States John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan. They were accomplished with suitable sobriety as well as a celebration of their lives.
What I so appreciated in President Reagan’s funeral was seeing so many non-American heads of state lined up to honor him as the late US President. As well, it was in the beauty of the Episcopal Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, most often referred to as Washington National Cathedral.
The recent passion for celebrity, dead or alive, is disturbing. While I can appreciate reminders along highways of deaths which may warn others of tricky roads and highways, the remembrances of flowers and toys, perhaps even lighted candles, set or piled at a death scene, perhaps at the persons’ residences gives me the creeps.
Is connecting to death and subsequent grief a dramatic - even self-serving - reaction to celebrity and what we perceive as our own, very bland lives? While human and non-human animals are being mistreated or ignored, left to wander without food or shelter, why not Do Something about those who are lost and suffering neglect? While I understand that materials bought have a portion of gain resulting in local and federal taxation, I remain convinced that monies might be better spent on immediate distress.
I don’t know; I’m asking.
The present condition of US politics is embarrassing. I may rant about the present state of choosing a Republican candidate for President at some point. Right now, I don’t even want to think about how those persons trying to gain the vote are behaving.
Hear the Wicked Witch of the West after she is zapped by a bucket of water: “What a world . . . what a world . . .