Blake Shelton had Twitter all atwitter with a tweet he posted last night. I never thought that I would be following Blake Shelton. I know who he is and I’ve heard some of his songs, but I tend not to follow celebrities unless they make me laugh. I pretty much tune out when celebrities start using their “voice” to tout various social issues. BORING! After watching him on The Voice, I got his sense of humor and he has undoubtedly, and surprisingly become a highlight of the show. That is why I was surprised by his tweet in which he re-writes a popular Shania Twain song.
My first reaction was, “What the…” There was a complete disconnect from what I was watching on The Voice; this affable, charming guy who was very positive and supportive, and a guy who would post, what I and many others construed as, lyrics that incited violence against gays. Over the course of the next several hours a controversy over the tweet erupted sparking the attention of GLAAD, who demanded an apology.
An apology is great, but it doesn’t erase hate. So, when it comes to Blake Shelton, I don’t feel he has it in him to hate people because of their sexual preference. I think when we become comfortable with our opinions about certain issues, we feel we can make jokes assuming our audience understands that’s not what we stand for. Unfortunately for Blake, he probably gained a lot of new followers after appearing on The Voice who are unfamiliar with him. Does that make it right to post lyrics about violence geared towards any sexual preference or gender? No. That’s a lesson he learned the hard way.
So what are some things to consider before we post a tweet? First, ensure that you are sober. Blake in this instance, wasn’t. Next, be able to provide context. Was his controversial tweet from his point of view, or that of a woman’s? Finally, think before you post. How will my tweet be perceived by family, friends and outsiders? Hopefully these tips will help you not make the same mistake Blake did.