Richard Gere vs. India
My Culture vs. “Their” culture
When I heard a few days back about the outrage in India about Richard Gere kissing on the cheek another movie star on stage during an Aids Fundraiser - as the brief footage on TV showed - all that flew through my mind in a split second was how unfortunate an incident to take to an extreme by another “evangelical like" mentality…
Done. Deleted. To another thing.
As the story repeated in the "news" (for goodnes sake!) my though played over just as sweeftly each time - while a smile began manifesting – pondering however briefly on how sensitive and hypocritical this issue has become, as Bollywood films tend to be of a highly sensual insinuating tone – cheeky little blatant tease!
Earlier this afternoon, I head there was a warrant out for Gere’s arrest – this time I paused for a second longer. Hmmmmm!
A warrant out for Richard Gere’s arrest!?
Oh my, oh my…. The Dalai Lama’s friend was in deep water…
His entire life information (known to me) flashed by as I was vacuuming. How ridiculous!
This dedicated Buddhist man acused of doin - somethin’ wrooooong? Indecent?
During the 6:00PM news, while savoring a lovely cup of coffee, when again the "news" repeated and this time showed the sequence of events in its entirety.
(Of course, NOTHING, compared to what we see even fleetingly - on a daily/hourly basis - as we flick up and down our TV chanels!)
It struck me "a tad differently"
Well, let us see now. This was more than a little playful peck on the cheek....
He is an actor, she is an actor.
He is giving his name to the event. She is giving her name to the event.
It occurred to me, that possibly aside those two facts, these people might have very little else in common. It is possible they had just met only a few hours, perhaps day before. Maybe not.
In “real life”, this would be highly inappropriate.
This was not a film, it was a charitable event.
When, and most importantly how did I loose sight of the fact that it really does not matter how famous he is, or how "familiar" (I may think) I am with him?
He was a stranger kissing another stranger; someone's daughter, sister, fiancée… ? At a place of work!
Big silence on the matter in North America, most likely all thinking those loonies in India are overreacting?
Are they? Both?
Would this have happened in a local corporation between staff from different regions, sexual harassment laws would have found their way so fast on to his desk his head would be spinning as fast as he followed his feet out the main door – at any place that would hold itself to any credible standards.
Yet, because he is an actor, as a society, we overlooked the transgression.
OWH – I could slap myself over my own head.
A thousand apologies.
Would I welcome this unsolicited, public demonstration of affection from a stranger?
Good grief – whoul you? Who would?
So, this is not a matter of Gere vs. India, my culture vs. their culture.
Nor, my beliefs vs. any other's beliefs...
It is a matter of respect, of common sense, of proper manners.
What happened to manners?
Sadly, this is when a reality check comes in really handy.
Ooooooooooops. 11:00PM NEWS : The lady in question, Shilpa Shetty, ( stunningly gorgeous - no wonder he "weakened") appears to also have a warrant our for her arrest ...
12:35AM: Richard Gere was the guest on Jon Steward's Daily Show, the entire incident was minimized to a kiss on the cheek (it was around truckers, anyway... sort of thing attitude ...) and, a minority political group is causing this situation which will go through formal court procedures, where it will thrown out. Period. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
OR, is it ... much to do about nothing?