I was sent a link this morning by a friend showing Taylor Swift winning an MTV VMA Award (Video Music Award). I didn't watch the show, but I did check out the link.
In the video, Taylor Swift was given the award and was making her acceptance speech. Suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, Kanye West (a successful rap artist) rushed the stage (where was security???). He took her mic away and stated that he thought Beyoncé Knowles should have won instead. Poor Taylor just stood there shocked and speechless. The accompanying story says that she just sobbed backstage afterwards.
I just sat there staring at the screen after the sound bite was over. I would have never dreamed something like this could happen. Culture is changing rapidly... there's no denying that. And today's young people have a different way of expressing themselves and doing things than we did when I was a teenager.
But what Kanye West did was far beyond a cultural expression. It was a total lack of respect. I may not agree with someone else's choice, or decision, but that doesn't give me the right to embarrass them publicly, or steal their "moment in the spotlight."
Pop culture has created a generation of young stars that believe the rules don't apply to them. Because of this our news (& gossip) shows are filled with these stars self-destructing (imploding) before our eyes). This problem has existed for generations (actually, since the beginning), but there has seemingly been a line that was never crossed at an event like this... one that respects other celebrities and their accomplishments.
I see this death of respect in the political arena, the cultural arena and the social arena. And it will ultimately bring the death of our society. I think believers have a responsibility to reclaim the God-ordained principle of respecting others.
Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. - Rom. 12:10
Show proper respect to everyone... - 1 Pet. 2:17
We are to honor others, realizing that they were created in the image of God (see Gen. 1:27). Every man, woman and child on the earth today bears the image of God, whether they are living like it or not. And as such, they deserve our respect. Isn't this what God did for us? He showed us respect that we didn't deserve by sending Jesus to die for us when we were separated from Him (see Rom. 5:6-8).
If we are going to impact our culture and bring a change, we will do it through our words, attitudes and actions. I encourage you to ask God to help you see others as He does: bearers of His image and likeness. And then respond accordingly!
PS. Beyoncé showed this kind of respect by inviting Taylor up on stage with her to finish her acceptance speech after she won her own award. Way to go!