When I found out what happened at the Oscars event last evening, I was frustrated, I was annoyed at the lack of maturity in the vast majority of the posts I saw.   I lost the little respect I had left for The Academy when I saw their vague and thoughtless response. (1)  After thinking about what I had to say to others' responses of either: humor, support, picking sides (Us. V Them), or condoning it in some way - I realized I have seen little to no rational growth based responses.  So here is my opinion, my mindful, hopeful, perspective on how We As a Society can make a change at this low moment.  

Let's stop being numb to this.
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The Perspective
The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.
Roll A1:  In hosting public events like this, there are unwritten rules around jokes involving individuals, etc.  Chris Rock shouldn't have joked about Jada's alopecia, an autoimmune disorder.  Unfortunately, we are at a place where these criteria must be added in writing. Performers and the entertainment industry need to take a hard look and be held accountable for their antiquated business model of profit from negative and destructive reactionary themes. 

Roll A2: The Academy or the institution hosting the event, could have instantly taken action.  In the case of violence and belligerence, event staff, security, and present law enforcement should have taken action, escorting him out and assessing the situation.  There should have been a break or immediate condemnation and apology for both individuals' behavior.   
Reflection
Jokes are defacto calling for reaction.  In this day and age where we must unite and find common ground in as many places as possible, consider using this time more effectively for thought experiments and awareness - ultimately: find a new source for the Wow Factor - Let's Innovate on Entertainment a bit.  This shit has gotten stale.  

If it was commonplace to let the butt of the joke in on it - if the writer wishes to use the joke & truly feels the recipient or character will see the humor in it - then own it first.  
Roll B: Will Smith or an upset, angry, frustrated person. He could have very well responded thoughtfully and civilly.  He had every right to feel as if he had to stand up for his wife, but it is the way he went about it that was out of line.  

The Major issue here is Reaction and missing impulse control + boundaries.​​​​​​​
You Don't Control What Happens, You Control How You Respond
Reflection
When will society move to Reasopnces as the impulse reaction we take?  My hope is that this can be an exemplar to change and growth.  

If  Will used his reach and influence on media platforms to explain how and why the action of Chris, the Academy, and all those who laughed was wrong and reframed it similarly to the way I am here, this could have been a beautiful example of the growth and maturity we all should have in this advanced day and age.  
  Instead, a man's status and the “Wow Factor of Entertainment Value” got him out of the consequences one should face for such behavior.  (I believe in constructive consequences... topic for another post)  Public figures and thought leaders often don't think deeply or with a wide enough scope of how their actions and words impact and shape the beliefs and behaviors of the consumers of such content - including them and their peers.  
 
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Let's...
(Take Action)
...this opportunity to stop the gossip, Us v Them sides of this, Immediate cancel + forget the culture and use it in a constructive way.   Let’s start conversations, true dialog on how we can look at this from a new mindful perspective compared to the banter, memes, and rhetoric out there now.   


Thought Leaders & Governors of The Academy 
Learn from this.  Make Change.  Don't let this happen again.  Reflect on your position and impacts, stay grounded in the realities you create.
Make a statement, use your resources to make an event or show out of it.  Tell stories and let voices be heard.  Foster reflection and growth. Lead with integrity.

Those Involved
Take the space you need.  Think about your actions and the point of view of the other side(s).  Mediate and reflect on what you can do to learn and help push the world forward through your shortcomings. 

Public Figures & Entertainment Industry
Consider this your warning, your change to be on the right side of history.  Tell your stories, get comfortable with emotional vulnerability.  Use your platform for self growth and positive impact.

Commentators & Viewers 
Take this in.  Consider the why.  Why did you say what you did about this situation, how you can grow from it.  How does this affect you, and people you know? 

Academics, Educators, Counselors & Mental Health Professionals
How can you change the narrative?  How can you use this conversation for growth? 
There are many themes of CBT patterns of thought in my writing.  I hope to elaborate more on it later.
Eg. Through + Beliefs (Create) Feelings (Create)  Actions > (Create) Results >  

ALL
Think about the message that is reinforced in our culture by this happening what is the reality?  The message this sends is that violence is okay.  Think about an abuser seeing this, great we gave them another fallacy to back their unfortunate logic.  The Academy and Media are saying to victims of abuse that "we are not here for you."  How sad is that?   Does it invalidate you or someone you know?  Does this hit a trauma you are trying to or have been healing from?
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Retrospective
We all love a good roast or joke – however, extremely on a stage like this, with such a massive psychological and cultural impact of its depictions and reach.  Thought leaders must be mindful of the messages and standards they set in the works they are responsible for.  In this case, this falls to The Board of Governors, Directors & Producers, Networks, and The Audience - all of us giving this attention until change and reflection is in order​​​​​​​

This is a two-part problem. The side of Reactionism (violence in this case) takes center stage and the side of insensitivity. Awareness and at-scale personal growth are needed in our world today to grow past these areas of anger, hate, insensitivity, and lack of mutual compassion.  With this intent, hopefully, in the near future, we can have a more functional society where at least one side of situations like this is seen from a higher and more fundamental perspective. Stopping or mitigating the risk of such behaviors.
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The Acadamy's Standards of Conduct

Image 3.  Standards of Conduct, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  Via. @brooksbarnesNYT  (Tweet)

A Small Sample of Responses 
Image 1.  The Academy's vague and thoughtless response.
Image 1.  The Academy's vague and thoughtless response.
https://twitter.com/ananavarro/status/1508275082958970887
https://twitter.com/ananavarro/status/1508275082958970887
https://twitter.com/PreetBharara/status/1508269610747015184
https://twitter.com/PreetBharara/status/1508269610747015184
https://twitter.com/michaelharriot/status/1508284296481722372
https://twitter.com/michaelharriot/status/1508284296481722372
https://twitter.com/SteveSchmidtSES/status/1508284717178626052
https://twitter.com/SteveSchmidtSES/status/1508284717178626052
https://twitter.com/SteveSchmidtSES/status/1508284717178626052
https://twitter.com/SteveSchmidtSES/status/1508284717178626052
https://twitter.com/georgehahn/status/1508293369281323013
https://twitter.com/georgehahn/status/1508293369281323013
https://twitter.com/matthewjdowd/status/1508443449158164501
https://twitter.com/matthewjdowd/status/1508443449158164501
Meme: https://twitter.com/MatthewKick/status/1508442999235227648
Meme: https://twitter.com/MatthewKick/status/1508442999235227648
https://twitter.com/thegreatbeardy/status/1508443169100341248
https://twitter.com/thegreatbeardy/status/1508443169100341248
https://twitter.com/TClarityLane/status/1508284941796315138
https://twitter.com/TClarityLane/status/1508284941796315138
https://twitter.com/iWriterGirl/status/1508390514382581765
https://twitter.com/iWriterGirl/status/1508390514382581765
https://twitter.com/EliMcCann/status/1508491174604013573
https://twitter.com/EliMcCann/status/1508491174604013573
https://twitter.com/dremilyportermd/status/1508449997641109509
https://twitter.com/dremilyportermd/status/1508449997641109509
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Footnotes: as I say "low moment" I am specifically referencing the general reaction and response to this event.  Yes, this is a complicated time in human history, War in Ukraine, Covid, the State of the Media.  The last few years of events have made many of us more aware of the low points in our world, the kryptonites of our lives, and places we have to grow and heal.   Culture, Perspective, and Attitude are more divided now than ever.  This is my way of contributing to that growth and healing, both personally and in a shareable format for the world around me. 

I have failed to clearly note that this is a two-part problem.  The side of Reactionism (violence in this case) takes center stage and the side of insensitivity.  Awareness and at-scale personal growth are needed in our world today to grow past these areas of anger, hate, insensitivity, and lack of mutual compassion.  With this intent, hopefully, in the near future, we can have a more functional society where at least one side of situations like this is seen from a higher and more fundamental perspective. Stopping or mitigating the risk of such behaviors. (added to reflection section)

Freedom of speech has nothing to do with institutions' and public figures' duty to uphold as well as demonstrate good judgment.  Lead with integrity.

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