I have never considered that my patronage of a business, or the lack thereof, would make or break the enterprise. So, I find it amusing that D-list celebrities believe their threats to leave Twitter could make any difference when it comes to the company’s bottom line.
This week, stars who haven’t been relevant in years, such as Toni Braxton and Sara Bareilles, announced that they would leave Twitter in the wake of its purchase by SpaceX founder Elon Musk. Braxton, who last had a Billboard 100 hit in the 1990s, said she was leaving because she saw “hate speech” on the platform since the acquisition late last week. Bareilles, who I think had a hit with “Love Song” in the early 2000s, claims the platform is “just not for me” anymore.
Apparently, free speech and open banter about political issues are difficult for denizens of the 99-cent bargain CD bin at Walmart to process—and they cannot help but virtue signal about it. Nevertheless, Braxton and Bareilles both still have open and active Twitter accounts.
Another celebrity who has problems with opposing viewpoints is Rob Reiner. The washed-up television star, best known as “Meathead” and who recently admitted to Bill Maher that he gets his news exclusively from leftist propaganda channels like CNN and MSNBC, screeched that he was leaving the platform, too. Yet he has tweeted about a dozen times since that announcement.
Fading leftist celebrities now face a conundrum for the ages when it comes to Twitter: Will they give up the little bit of relevance they continue to have by walking away from the social media platform as a matter of principle or will they find it impossible to quit the medium that still brings them the attention they crave?
Ultimately, they can’t quit. It would be the final nail in the coffins of their careers.
And if they were to walk away from the platform for real, they would disrespect the fans they have—people who actually want to see their content—all in the name of wokeness. These former stars would signal to the people who once legitimately paid money to see them or spent time consuming their work that they are less valuable to them than their ability to cry about Elon Musk.
Braxton, Bareilles, and Reiner will all get a bit of press from their screeching about leaving Twitter, but if they actually leave the platform, they’ll fade away for good. They know this—and so do their management teams, who need them to remain relevant to keep roofs over their own heads. They need social media to attract whatever headlines they can. Giving up access to millions of followers (assuming they aren’t bots) restricts that possibility.
And what is it that is so offensive to these people that they would make a stink about wanting to leave a social media platform? The answer, simply put, is the terrifying possibility of reading words with which they disagree.
As an adult who takes personal responsibility for his own actions and well-being, I know if I am this bothered by something or someone on the internet, I can simply close the website or app, walk away from my computer or cell phone, and even decide not to read what is written. Apparently, this is a difficult concept for these semi-celebrities.
In fact, my many non-one-hit-wonder friends don’t bother themselves at all about disagreeable opinions. When they see something they don’t like, they ignore it—and they don’t feel the need to screech about it online or draw attention to themselves by announcing that they can’t physically deal with it. And even if they did, they would follow through and actually remove themselves from the social media platform about which they were screeching.
But it is difficult for many on the Left who have been sheltered in their own tiny worlds to realize that they’ve been led to believe lies. Rob Reiner straight-up admitted he doesn’t watch any news programming that challenges the conspiracy theories he holds so dear. I’d imagine other celebrities are no different. They live in sheltered information bubbles. Imagine being in their shoes, watching as America under Democratic Party control crumbles and careens into a potential nuclear war—and not having Republicans to blame. Facing the harsh reality that you’ve been sold an incredible set of lies has to be a dramatic experience. Hiding may be all they have left.
For the rest of the adults in the world—the ones who don’t scream that everyone who differs with them is racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-vaxx, anti-science, transphobic, an election denier, a deplorable, “ultra MAGA,” a climate denier, a fascist, or literally Hitler—when faced with facts they don’t like, life goes on. Ultimately, a social media company changing ownership doesn’t make a real difference. But neither does hearing an opinion with which we disagree. Because we’re adults.