Say What You Mean

July 17, 2015

This is Ariana Grande, pretender to the throne of the great Mariah Carey:



 The ensemble speaks for itself.


So what is the point of this posting?  Is it to capitalize on the troubles this woman's currently having?  Is it to offer public adulation of someone who dresses like a Showgirl?  Is it to excoriate her?  None of the above.  It's talk about the necessity of saying what you mean.  Need an example?  These shenanigans are what got her in trouble.


Basically, she licks a doughnut and then says that she hates America and Americans.  After an outcry, this is her mea culpa:


I am EXTREMELY proud to be an American and I've always made it clear that I love my country. What I said in a private moment with my friend, who was buying the donuts, was taken out of context and I am sorry for not using more discretion with my choice of words. As an advocate for healthy eating, food is very important to me and I sometimes get upset by how freely we as Americans eat and consume things without giving any thought to the consequences that it has on our health and society as a whole. The fact that the United States has the highest child obesity rate in the world frustrates me.  We need to do more to educate ourselves and our children about the dangers of overeating and the poison that we put into our bodies.  We need to demand more from our food industry. However I should have known better in how I expressed myself; and with my new responsibility to others as a public figure I will strive to be better. As for why I cannot be at the MLB show, I have had emergency oral surgery and due to recovery I cannot attend the show. I hope to make it up to all those fans soon. That being said let me once again apologize if I have offended anyone with my poor choice of words.


Huh?  So in one breath, you say you hate your country and every person living in it.  Then in another breath, you explain away the prior proclamation with, "ACTUALLY, when I say I hate America, that means I hate the obesity epidemic."




So what does this have to do with us?  Well, it's the ideal opportunity for us to talk about saying what you really mean and taking responsibility for the words that you say or write.  When you do those things, you don't have to backtrack or remember the lie you told last year to your spouse when you said that he didn't look fat in that track suit, or he looked superfly in those pimp-daddy shoes.  And you certainly don't seem like you're trying to go into damage-control mode by releasing an apology video to the apology letter you just made in order to save the multi-million dollar checks that you regularly receive from fans--you know, the ones who actually are giving you that check.  (My head just spun.  Did yours?)


We don't know if Ms. Grande meant what she said at the doughnut shop or what she said in her apology letter, or even in her apology video.  In any case, she's screwed for the meantime.


Here's our take:  When you creatively use words to try to respond to being called out by others, you really do nothing but obfuscate as well as introduce doubt into everything you're saying, past and future.  If you're at all interested in efficiency, you'd realize that owning up to what you said and correcting it for the future is faster than obfuscating with a deluge of embarrassment.  Sure, the pain of owning up is real, but being caught in a previous lie is purely embarrassment.


To be fair, this type of thing happens all the time, not just in the music industry.  Politicians say one thing and explain it away with different words that are at variance with the former ones.  CEOs of companies do it in their company-wide memos when they decimate their workforce to bring in cheap labor from elsewhere.  People suing each other under the bench do it when presenting their case or defending against one.  It's silly.


The moral of the story?  Just say what the hell you mean.



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