Our Opinion

Oh Those Friendly Gremlins - Part 1

Posted by admin on February 6, 2009

Imagine living in a forest filled with little gremlins that survived by constantly hunting you down and snipping off pieces of your flesh; that each day, they waited for you to emerge from your cave to follow you around as you foraged for food or met up with friends - all the while constantly cutting off pieces of your skin so they could sell it and make lots of money.

Imagine this went on for years and years. At first you thought it was pretty cool having gremlins pay so much attention to you. It meant that your skin had become valuable and you were becoming successful. Besides, you could always grow more skin. And, those gremlins seemed pretty nice - they yelled your name, said how happy they were to see you and even thanked you when you stopped to let them slice some more. What a wonderful life.

But then, one day, you felt like moving around the forest by yourself to breathe a little of the fresh air and maybe find a nice place to sit down to eat a sandwich. So, you emerged from your cave all dressed up for going out and you told those friendly gremlins, who were always patiently waiting for you, that you'd like them to go find someone else to acquire skin from as you'd like some time alone.

So you departed into the forest only soon to discover...that something was wrong - you weren't alone! The gremlins had followed you and were still cutting your flesh. Ah, they must not have understood you, so like the reasonable person you are, you stopped and explained it again. This time they must have gotten the message - you spoke very clearly - so off again you went on your journey...but wait, all the gremlins were still following you.

"Now hold on, you friendly gremlins, I said that was enough...STOP IT!" And to your surprise, the gremlins got even more excited and your skin became even MORE valuable to them. You discovered the madder you got at them - you started throwing sticks and rocks at them - the more that arrived and the greater the value of your skin. You learned that they weren't really friendly after all.

So, imagine after years of this, after asking them to leave so many times, after convincing yourself there was nothing further you could do to stop them...you understandably gave up and decided: "there is nothing I can do about them, they are just part of being famous, I'll just have to live with it." Imagine how the gremlins would rejoice and how their numbers would swell and how the problem would not go away...

To be continued...

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The Ball, the Wall and Barack Obama

Posted by admin on January 27, 2009

The following was written by the Founder of The PRI:

Every now and then an event takes place that reminds me that what seems truly impossible isn't always. 

My first of these events occurred when I was in 5th grade.  I lived close to school so I walked home everyday for lunch and, on one particular day, arrived back at school early while everyone else was still eating.  Kickball was our regular game we played so I grabbed the rubber ball and walked out onto the playing field which was really just a big parking lot.  Since I attended a Catholic school, on the other side of the lot was a very tall church.  Really tall.  It even had a bell tower.  So tall, I figured there was no way I could kick that ball onto that roof!  Well, after I apologized to the parish priest who had to climb a number of ladders to retrieve the ball, I realized that what I thought impossible wasn't always so. 

But I forgot this valuable lesson during the '80s when the Cold War was in full swing.  It never dawned on me that one day the Iron Curtain would fall.  But sure enough, I remember the images flashing on the TV - on November 9th, 1989, the Berlin Wall came down.  Shame on me for forgetting what I learned on the playground - what seems impossible is not always. 

So when someone told me 18 months before the presidential election that they were very excited about a candidate named Barack Obama, I reminded myself of my earlier "impossible" lessons.  But surely, I thought, a man whose name rhymes with "Osama" - the archenemy of our country since 9/11 - and who is African American, stands no chance of becoming our next President.  First, we've never had an African American President before.  In fact, there have only been five black U.S. Senators in the last 200 years - and Obama was one of those!  AND, his name rhymes with "Osama"!!  (My earlier lessons did pay off - in the end, I thought he would be elected and as we now know, I got this one right.)

To those that might be out there thinking it impossible to reform the paparazzi industry, to restore the right of privacy to celebrities and to get the media to exhibit some sense of humanity, I know you too have seen those things you thought impossible become reality.  They happen every day - and so can this.

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