An Important Open Letter to You About Lena Dunham
An Ordinary Times Guest Post, by Someone You’re Friends With on Facebook
Greetings, Facebook Friends!
I’m writing today to let you know about one of the biggest crisises (crisees? crisisseses? crisi?) that faces America today. The situation is dire, but I believe that with enough of you clicking ‘like’ and recommending this post to your friends, together we can make this country a place where our children and our children’s children can grow up safe and prosperous.
This past week Lena Dunham — this is true — asked aspiring artists to perform for her book tour, with the understanding that the payment would be the free publicity and not money.
God help us all.
I’m sure you’ve already read Time magazine’s thorough in-depth expose on random people tweeting about this topic, and when you did I bet you were glad that they chose the Lena Dunham hill to die on. Thank God Time has their priorities straight and featured the story about tweets about Dunahm, while only giving three column inches (in their opinion section) on ex-Federal Reserve employee Carmen Segarra’s secret tapings of meetings with Goldman Sachs. That’s the kind of gusty call by editors that shows Time totally gets journalism today; those tote-baggers over at Public Radio could stand to learn a thing or two from the folks at Time. In fact my only question for Time is, why waste any inches on the Segarra tapes? All they showed was how the Fed’s systemic incompetence and deference to those they are charged with regulating will assuredly lead to another eventual financial breakdown. Booooooring! Wake me up what that snoozefest is over! Seriously, there wasn’t a single celebrity in the entire story.
I’m sure also you read the scathing coverage of Dunham-gate over at Gawker, which believe you me has been doing a lot of top-notch investigative reporting these days. Like how they broke the story of a Real Housewives C-list celebrity being sentenced to prison, by the investigative-journalism tactic of cutting and pasting that information from Northjersy.com. Or their riveting period piece published just today, on how TV’s The Biggest Loser is airing a Halloween themed episode tonight — even though Halloween is still a few weeks away! This is why we need to have journalists who are willing to take the time to go through the TV listings of shows they were going to watch anyway — to be our fourth-rail watchdog! Well, and also so that rising journalism Superstars like Hamilton Nolan can reprint what The New York Times already reported, but introduce that data with snarky phrases like “rich and famous human being Lena Dunham.” (If you don’t add the snarky phrase, readers won’t know whether or not they’re supposed to be outraged and the whole journalism breaks down.)
You’ve probably seen takedowns of Dunham everywhere you go online these days — not only on hard-hitting news sites like Salon and HuffPo, but even on political sites life Ricochet, Balloon Juice, and Lawyers Guns and Money. These modern-day love-children of Sinclair Lewis and Edward R. Murrow have put aside their differences, reached across the aisle, and teamed up to let us know that one of the single most important news stories American citizens need to know to make the wheels of Democracy turn is the fact that Lena Dunham is “awful people,” a harbinger of “the new gilded age,” and “a supporter of President Obama.”
My friends, Lena Dunham belongs to a select group of people that are the single-worst kind of human beings that exist in the world today: Artists whose work was really hipster-fashionable to like for a while, but then got too popular and faced hipster-pushback. Those people are the worst kinds of scum, and it is important that we remain vigilant in our support of this New Journalism whose first priority it putting them in their place.
So join me now: Please ‘like’ this Facebook post and recommend it to all of your Facebook friends. And then tweet it. With your help can we support journalists like Time’s Laura Stampler, Gawker’s Hamilton Nolan, and bloggers like James Pethokoukis in their ongoing fight against the country’s most existential threat: Popular entertainers whose work we always kind of thought was overrated.
Update: Oh! I see from my Facebook newsfeed that Dunham has already agreed to pay her artists, even though all of them were happy just for the exposure.
Hey, has anyone heard anything bad about Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey? Anything at all?
Seriously, I’m not picky.