Responses to Mike's last column show that not everyone agrees with what the Grrr Guy has to say ... let's hope his position as a role model remains in good standing. Here's what some readers thought ...
A Vick Fan writes: I am from Atlanta and have been a fan of Michael Vick for many years. He is a good guy and is one of the better “role models” among football players, which also contains the likes of Ray Lewis and Terrell Owens. In a moment of total frustration, Vick flipped a couple of birds at the booing fans. He immediately apologized and this type of behavior is out of character for Vick. I ask you, have you apologized for every out of character reaction you have had in a moment of total frustration?? Give the guy a break!
G. Turner in Plano, Texas, writes: "Happy Feet"? You Grrr the previews yet you find "Happy Feet" acceptable? Did you fall down and hit your head because your Grrrrs on this subject are FAR too selective!! Did you NOT listen to the songs in the movie? Prince's "Kiss"? Yeah, that's appropriate. "I'll Make Love to You"? You think THAT's appropriate? "Shake Your Bon-Bon"? If actually playing the lyrics from these songs in the movie were not bad enough, the producers selected other songs with VERY questionable content elsewhere in the song. What happens when the kids go home and want to listen to the rest of the song they heard in the movie? Think "The Message" is something you want your kid listening too? Yes, parents need to monitor what their kids get into, but when I go to an animated "family" movie I do not expect to have to protect my kids from content that is more appropriate for a PG-13 movie. This was ANYTHING but a G movie. Shame on you, Mike. You should be outraged at the music they played!!
--You're right. That's why it was a PG movie.
Amber in Iowa writes: Wow, you just compared breast-feeding (a highly beneficial and completely natural act) to someone who smokes. I'm not even sure I can find the words. Do you realize that America is one of the few countries that gets squeamish about someone breast-feeding their child? It's ridiculous. People shouldn't be offended. It's like being offended by someone eating in public. And even if some people feel a little weirded out by it ... tough. Breast feeding is the absolute best thing any mother can do for her child, and she shouldn't feel like she has to run to a bathroom or pump or cover up with a blanket just so she can provide her child with the best she can offer. Plus, when a child is breast-feeding, you really can't see too much anyway.
AD in NYC disagrees: I could not disagree with you more. Famous people are still just people and the idea that they should act any differently than everyone else is sheer lunacy. The only role models that young people need (or should have) are parents, and if parents abdicate their responsibilities in raising their children, then they have no right to whine when their little darlings act like idiots, regardless of how stupid Britney or Paris behave. What is truly pathetic is that so many people in our society care so deeply about the lives of celebrities. Look at what is page 1 news today -- Pamela Anderson and Kid Rock are getting divorced. There are so many real problems in this world and yet too many Americans care about Pamela Anderson. How sad is that???
Richard P. writes: The problem is that too many of these so-called celebs are only famous because of their bad behavior. Paris would be just another rich, pretty girl if it weren't for all the wild partying. A lot of pretty mediocre actors get big names just because they don't know how to behave. I think a lot of it goes back to kids not being taught proper behavior in the first place. But maybe their parents weren't taught, either.
Walter T. from Claymont, Del., writes: I don’t disagree with your views at all. I just wanted to add what “Grrs” me is when Jesse Jackson in the Michael Richards incident and Barbara Walters and Rob Reiner in the Mel Gibson incident preach that is right not to forgive people even when they apologize and preach that people can never be forgiven no matter how sorry they are. I think their comments become just as much “hate speech” as the offender’s comments. It would be no different than if Terry Bradshaw said that Michael Vick can never be forgiven for his hand gesture to the fans this last Sunday and called for a boycott of attending or watching another Atlanta Falcons game as long as Michael Vick plays there. These people have just as much responsibility in their comments.
Rene L. from KY Christmas GRRR: My family and I attended a parade/celebration in Louisville, Ky., featuring Santa Claus. I was astonished to hear how many people commented how much better the event would be "without all these kids." HELLO PEOPLE it is a family event where Santa rides through the street -- what do you expect!! One 20-something lady (without kids) even pushed past us, nearly knocking over my infant son's stroller. Her only response was to look behind her, glare at us and roll her eyes. Even more amazing was the number of adults pushing through kids while cursing. Here's a tip for the obnoxious child-hating oblivions: if you hate children that much, then by all means avoid festivities that feature Santa Claus.
Gary Jacksonville, Fla., response to a Your Grrrs Nov. 28 comment: Charles in TN has it all wrong. Yes, Michael Richards had the right to respond to the hecklers, but not in a racist way. He could have used any number of words to call the hecklers, like jerks, idiots or even a--holes. But when he used the N word, he crossed the line. End of story.
Michael in Florida response to J. Perkins: I am a waiter. I do agree with you on the plate handling. I will state that most people grab plates from my hands, thus letting the server think that it is "OK" to do that for everyone. Sometimes, let's say that you are in a corner table, you cannot reach the person, so you pass the plate. If it is that much of an irritating problem, why do you take the plate from them? Motion for them to set the plate down. Let a manager know. Most restaurant managers look for feedback on how to please the customers. That is why managers walk and ask tables "how are you doing?" and "is there anything I can get for you?" Speak up and you may find that your next experience could be better. This makes me wonder where you are eating because believe it or not, not every place is fine dining. Pay $50 a plate, sure set the plate down in front of me, be upset that the server did not. Paying $9.99 for half a rack of ribs, probably should tell you that you are in a casual atmosphere, so take your plate, shut up and tip your meager $3 for getting you seven refills and five extra BBQ sauces while we watch you suck on your fingers trying to get all your money's worth. And speaking of tips, "Yes" we do expect them because the government allows the company to pay us $2.13 an hour because it is customary to tip at a restaurant.
Leanne M. doesn't agree with Kathee's Kelly Ripa GRRR: I saw the Kelly Ripa/Clay Aiken show that morning and Clay was way off base the whole morning. He came in there trying to be “cute,” but his constant sarcasm and cutting remarks during the opening monologue were very out of line. At one point Kelly turned to him and said “Who do you think you are? Regis?” because he would not let up on his cutting comments. Putting his hand over her mouth was the final straw of a very bad morning for her, and I understand her being fed up. Kelly Ripa earned the spot of co-host on that show and has done a great job in that role. I could not stand the former co-host (didn’t want to bash her by name) but I now watch or TiVo the show on a regular basis. The chemistry between Kelly and Regis is great. If you are a guest host you should act with respect toward the one you host with. It is, after all, her show not Clay’s. I hope he is not invited back again.
Roger in Cypress, Texas, in response to Leslie T. Starbucks Cup Size GRRR: I can tell you why Starbucks uses Tall, Grande and Venti instead of Small, Medium and Large: it's so you don't feel like a complete schmuck for paying $5 for a small coffee!