I first caught wind of this whole insulting Greeting Card debacle yesterday and was undone at what I saw. All over the internet and on television, the news that Target Stores was pulling a greeting card off the shelves that read, “Next time you think of dating the bad boy, think of Whitney Houston. That’s all I’m going to say.”
ABC News interviewed a Target Representative who said that the greeting card was available before the singer’s passing on February 11th, 2012; and have been in the process of yanking the negative gift card from the shelves since that time. A photo of this card was posted on Reddit.com ten days ago, and of course, when there is negative news concerning any celebrity, news travels like wildfire! TMZ picked up on news of this card, and the rest is tabloid history! My beef isn’t with TMZ. With this kind of reporting, it is what it is. Nothing more than Scandal Sheet News that goes back before the likes of Walter Winchell and Rona Barrett. It’s their job to bring you the juicy news all drenched in scandal and sensation! This kind of news will never play out of society. People’s curiosity and want and need to belong to the stars are just too huge to quell! I remember the feeding frenzy surrounding the OJ Simpson Trial. The press behind that incident was maddening, overblown and consumed and fed many idle daytime soap opera watching/news hungry couch potatoes; giving plenty of dirt to dish. Myself included (I shamefully admit)!
My beef however is with the manufacturer of such a greeting card. I wonder do they have any idea how far-reaching the damage is to such an awful statement wrapped up as a gift card? Since Target says that the card had been on their shelves since before Whitney’s death, that means they knew about it long before her passing, and did nothing to remove it from the shelves when she was alive! Given that, there is the matter of who could have seen such a card, months, days or weeks prior to Whitney are passing? Could the Houston family have seen this card before or after her death? It is a given that they’ve seen or heard about it by now! Even Whitney herself may have seen it prior to her death! Profiting off the misfortunes of celebrities appears to be big business! I think it stinks! So what these businesses are saying in affect is that, “If you’re a public figure, you have no business trying to live a private life. Your every move is an open book!” Now you tell me, where is this law written?
A friend of mine mentioned that tact is what’s missing oh so badly from our society now days. Scruples are another act of respect and restraint folks are missing as a personality trait now days. Morals? I won’t even go into that whole issue! Whoever profited from such a scathingly mean Gift Card is no better than the person who took that shameful photo of Whitney Houston as she lay in her final coffin resting place. Target as well as many other retailers should really put forth an effort to monitor the type of products they release to the consumers of America! I’m asking too much aren’t I? Oh well, I tried! It is rumored that Wal-Mart would soon be selling this gift card coming soon in April! I pray that this is just that, a rumor! I hope there isn’t any other retailer out there thinking about doing such a thing. Remember, it was the loyal and vast Whitney Houston fan base that got Target to shelve that mean spirited card in the first place, by flooding the complaint lines, and protesting… POWER TO THE PEOPLE! They did well, taking their fight all the way to multi-media. So retailers and Cheap Scandal Gift Card manufactures! As you can see, that’s not good for business at all! And that’s “all I’m going to say!”
Glenn Peppers March 2, 2012