**Whew. Excuse me for being a little ragey, if you come here for happy, uplifting posts you should probably turn away now. If you choose to stay feel free to chime in/troll the comment section below. **
As most of you who have any access to Social Media (which would be everyone reading this blog) have heard, Whitney Houston passed away on Saturday night. This resulted in the thousands (or more) Tweets/FB posts/etc about said death.
Let’s do a little back-tracking for a second. I’m prior military (US Navy FTW!) and my husband is currently an Active Duty Marine. The majority of our friends/acquaintances are military, resulting in the majority of my friends list on Facebook being affiliated with the military (AD, Veteran, spouse, dependent, family member, etc). Needless to say, I’m a very pro-military person.
That being said, I was very put off when I started seeing a flow of posts condemning people for discussing Whitney Houston’s death in the vein of (paraphrasing here!) ‘There are US service members who die everyday for your freedom, who cares about an overpaid celebrity with a drug problem’.
Wait, what?! How does wishing another human being to ‘Rest in Peace’ after passing have anything to do with KIA service members? I’m perfectly capable of having compassion for someone who suffers from an addiction AND mourning the loss of American Service Members. It’s not a case of one or the other, for Goodness sake!
Then came the memes.
I don’t know about you, but I see news coverage for KIA Service Members quite frequently, and it makes my heart break every single time. Believe it or not, I wish there was far less coverage (due to less deaths, not ignoring the sacrifice!) than there is. When my husband is deployed I cannot turn on the news at all, EXCEPT for celebrity news because it causes me to have panic attacks.
Whitney Houston isn’t famous for “going to rehab”, she’s famous for her music, and I don’t know about you, but music influences my life. It can help soothe my soul, and mend a broken heart. It makes me laugh, makes me cry, makes me think, and makes me smile. It helps me get through everyday mundane tasks, and overcome life’s hardest trials. Music even helps to make a deployment bearable.
But this isn’t about Whitney Houston, or why she was famous. It’s about the fact that death, and mourning the loss of HUMAN BEINGS isn’t a fucking contest. It’s tragic, combat is tragic, drug addiction is tragic, losing someone who has had an impact on your life, whether because you personally knew them, they sacrificed their life for your freedom, or they just created something that meant something to you, IS TRAGIC.
So grow the fuck up. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to spend my time with my own personal hero while I still can before he goes back into a combat zone for the fourth time. And I’m going to listen to a fucking Whitney Houston song while I do it. One that spoke to me and helps me get through the tough times.