Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"Disgraceful Portrayal of the 'First Gay Son' and Former President": Full Episode of Political Animals on the USA Network

Sundays at 10pm on the USA Network          
MY OPINION: I want to share my thoughts on the new USA 6 week series "Political Animals". This story is about the Clintons, but not about the Clintons. Do not get me wrong; this is a great story of a political family and struggles they might go through. The acting is exceptional by Sigourney Weaver, who plays the former First Lady and current Secretary of State. 
        The portrayal of the former president is reprehensible, played by Ciaran Hinds. They portray him less like Former President Clinton and more like J.R Ewing from the show "Dallas" from the 1980's. It seems odd to hear the cast during interviews state that this is not portraying the Clintons, but whom are you kidding? The major issue is that it is fiction, but they use much of the story line of the Clintons. 
         I do not think Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton needs this at the height of her career, nor does the former President. They have devoted their lives to public service and should not be ridiculed or mocked by distorting their lives. Oh wait, I forgot this is politics. Yes, President Clinton had the Monica Lewinsky scandal, but can we allow him to be human and make mistakes? Why is it that we hold our leaders to such high standards? They are not infallible or God's. Even God makes mistakes, although some might say on purpose. 
        Will I continue watching this dramatized TV series? Hell's yeah! It is a very dramatic portrayal of a political family in turmoil and has lots of twists and turns. They definitely know how to leave us with a cliffhanger. Two things this has in common with the show "Dallas" is that it always ended an episode where we were at the edge of our seats waiting for the next one and of course the portrayal of J.R Ewing. It was also nice to hear my school, GW mentioned a few times throughout the movie. 
         Sebastian Stan plays the Gay First Son. They portray his as a promiscuous, drug addicted and suicidal son. My question is why not show him as the one getting married, focused on a successful political future and the one that helps his straight addicted brother who is lost. Instead, they chose to show the straight son as the one that has all of the above. 
         The last thing the gay community needs is more stereotypical drama lay out in front of the world. In a time when gay marriage, gay adoption, civil rights and all are on the line, why not portray the gay son as the stable one? I think showing his doing lines of coke, ordering in a "hook up" and showing his painful life is just not a fair portrayal of what the gay life is today in 2012. 
         I know from my own past, these are real issues and are more prevalent in the gay community than in the straight world, but this is not the 1970's and this is not a fair portrayal of what the gay community is today. Sure it still exists and it is important to know, but do not make bars, clubs, random sex and drugs what the younger generation feels they have to experience and participate in. I am not judging anyone who has gone through that or is in the middle of that phase, I simply want to see the more wholesome side of what being gay offers. 
          Most cities now have a variety of gay sports leagues, political organizations, non-profit organizations, faith based institutions, theatre, volunteer opportunities and much more that allow people to meet in a more genuine environment.  I say this because I wish I knew about all this when I came out at 22 years old. I do not regret the past, but I do not want others to feel they are not worthy of a great life.  People have choices and they need to know it. When I came out, I had no idea that there was anything else aside from the "drugs, sex and rock and roll."
          The problem is not about making things look rosy, rather it is about giving the youth a chance to see positive role models with positive stories. I think gays go through so much dealing with discovering their sexuality, living closeted, coming out and learning how to navigate a world that no one taught them about. They need TV to show them the full picture and not just the more negative stereotypical lifestyle portrayed in this series. 
         I do not expect this to have them change the layout of the show; rather I feel it is important for the common folk to express their bone of contentions or their positive opinions. I think people are tired of the old movie/show critics writing from a journalistic and sensationalistic point of view. It is time for real people to express real life emotions and thoughts. I believe this is what true journalism is about and why blogs have become so vital to our modern day culture. Blogs target individuals and not masses, well most. 
         About 9 months ago, I started one called "Jewish Pink Elephant" (http://JewishPinkElephant.com) in order to give a voice to a segment of the population that have none. This is one of the greatest accomplishments and one of the most courageous ventures I have ever done. Because the Internet has spread around the world, one never knows the true impact one has on others. I have received emails from all over the United States, Israel, Iraq, Argentina, Columbia, India, Mexico and many more of people saying thank you and wanting to engage in conversation. 
         In closing, watch the episode and comment on your thoughts about it. People are thirsty for ideas, knowledge and points of view. Show yourself and be heard! 

Thank you, 
Rich Dweck 

Another site: Response by Kosher Queer Blogger

(8/12/12- After reading this over again, I realized that I was a bit over dramatic. Maybe, it was to try and get some shock value out of the title and other parts of it).

Watch the full episode: http://www.usanetwork.com/videos/Political%20Animals/Full%20Episodes

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