Military Home Front: An awards show for America’s real heroes
Sonya Sparks Murdock
Is it just me, or is anyone else sick of Hollywood awards season by now?
There were the Golden Globes, Screen Actors’ Guild Awards, People’s Choice Awards, Grammy Awards and Emmy Awards. There’s even a Kids’ Choice Awards, complete with green slime, to make sure that everyone gets a chance to spread the love around. It’s a wonder Hollywood has time to make any movies at all, since everyone is so busy presenting and receiving little golden statues.
If you ask me, Hollywood is the most self-congratulatory place on earth. In fact, there’s probably an award for that, too. It’s just gotten lost among all the other, more glamorous awards.
Perhaps it’s one of those awards presented at another banquet a week earlier and hosted by a B-list actress from “Dancing With the Stars.” The show didn’t air on national television because all the winners were ordinary-looking middle-aged guys in bad tuxedos with disheveled hair. They are the smart guys who win awards like “Best Lighting That Makes Meryl Streep Look 20 Years Younger Than She Actually Is” or the “Best Sound Effects for Making Moviegoers Deaf After Watching the Latest Installment of Mission: Impossible.”
Admittedly, most of us would prefer a show filled with glamorous evening gowns and millions of dollars’ worth of borrowed jewelry than an hour of geeks fumbling through awkward speeches thanking people we’ve never heard of.
But this year, the glitzy pomp and circumstance seems even more out of touch than normal. With so many Americans struggling just to put food on the table and shoes on their children, it is surprising to me that any of us would be interested in spending the better part of a Sunday evening watching the parade of overindulgence waltz down a red carpet like royalty.
The whole idea of celebrating the so-called “achievements” of a tiny percentage of our national population for merely entertaining us seems absurd.
Perhaps, though, the economy only increases our need for escape and these shows provide a brief respite from the rising price of gas and bank foreclosures. Admittedly, the Oscars will be a breath of fresh air after weeks of unending political debates among GOP candidates.
The American way has always been to reward hard work and sacrifice. But this constant barrage of stars patting themselves on the back seems petty when there are so many more serious issues facing our country. We sit through the rambling lists of nominees and the winners gushing speeches thanking everyone from their first-grade teachers to their stylists.
I say we come up with awards for the true unsung heroes out there – those who don’t get a huge over-the-top shindig to say, “Yea me!”
I think that if we are going to congratulate people for a job well done, we should start with the ordinary people who go about the business of helping others in need or making the world a better place to inhabit. We could call it the “I’m Bot Rich and Famous, But I Do Important Work” awards.
The awards would be for true acts of valor in combat, not the Hollywood version of war where heroes fight imaginary adversaries from outer space. The winners would have rid the world of real-life monsters like Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.
Best Ensemble Performance: SEAL Team 6.
Best Actor in a Drama: The dad who smiles and waves goodbye to his family as he leaves for a yearlong deployment.
Best Actress : The wife left behind to pretend that every day is normal.
Best Supporting Role: Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer, Medal of Honor recipient, who saved the lives of 36 Afghan and U.S. troops fighting the Taliban.
Best Female Supporting Role: Taryn Davis, who formed the American Widow Project four years ago after her husband, an Army corporal, was killed in Iraq. Now she supports nearly 1,000 other grieving young widows with her national support group.
The experts say that we do our children a disservice by idolizing the heroes of our pop culture, such as professional athletes and rock stars. We should encourage our children to find role models in average Americans who do good deeds and remind them to not be so impressed by people who only pretend to be heroes for a living.
So on Oscar night, just make sure you mention this to your kids. I know I will, but only after I ooh and aah over the designer dresses on the red carpet.