Whitney Houston: Not you will be missed, but you have been missed for a long time

Unless you have been living under a rock the past few days, you have heard one way or another that Whitney Houston died this past weekend.  Usually my iPhone is attached to me at all times, but when the news was announced I had placed my iPhone down to help wash my child in her bath.  When I returned for the latest in all things news, there it was: Breaking News Whitney Houston has died.  So she finally pulled it off, I thought to myself.

From that point on, hundreds if not thousands of messages poured in on Twitter about Whitney Houston.  Most proclaiming the loss of the greatest singer of all time.  Some under the hash tag #crackwhore with nasty insults about Whitney’s public drug problem.  Everyone seemed to have a comment about her death announcement.  To me, it was if she had been dead for 10 years already.  Her greatest gift was the gift of her voice.  She had not provided that gift for probably 10 years so other than reading about one public embarrassment after another, what else was she to me other than pretty much dead?

I kept up with her, because I am an avid reader of Radar Online and TMZ.  I tried to watch her reality show on television but I could not stand all of the beeping of every obscenity.  There was so much beeping that it was too hard to follow the dialog.  I gave up and instead just enjoyed the television show through Kathy Griffiin’s eyes.  It was one joke after another.  This beautiful woman with every advantage and a God given talent had been reduced to a comic’s punch lines.  All of this because of a raging drug problem played out in the public for all to see, laugh at and pity.  Did she suffer from bad self esteem, depression or all of the other insecurities that say lead people into drugs?  Who knows.  Maybe she just really liked the high.

I keep hearing that the “industry” should have done something.  I am 100% sure the “industry” tried.  The cold reality is that there was a ton of money to be made from Whitney.  All of those beautiful hits made millions.  Money is the best motivator.  I am sure every industry executive tried hiring the best addiction specialists and tried to help her.  There was so much money to be made.  I do not think she went on Oprah to discuss her addition by choice.  Those decisions are usually made by some industry person who wants to sell something and someone’s image needs a make over.  I also sure her famous family tried to help her.  How can anyone stand by and watch their loved one destroyed by drugs?  I am 100% sure those who loved her tried and tried and tried.

Who did not try?  Those who suffer from what I like to call the “Al Roker Syndrome”.  What is this syndrome you ask?  I diagnosed this syndrome long ago while watching the Today Show.  Al Roker goes out on the Plaza to meet and chat with the general public who crowd around every morning.  Now Al is a generally jolly guy and all of the eager general public is excited to be on camera.  Everyone is all smiles and laughter.  Whatever Al says or does is followed by laughter and giggles.  Funny or not funny followed by giggles and laughter.  What a distorted sense of reality Al must have if every time he says ANYTHING it is followed by laughter.  I have heard him sneeze and say, “excuse me”, in his jolly way and people laugh.  This, my friends, is the Al Roker Syndrome.  I believe all celebrities suffer from this syndrome.  I believe Whitney suffered greatly from this syndrome.  She probably surrounded herself with people who told her she was fabulous, her erratic behavior was no big deal and scored her the drugs whenever she asked only because she was famous.  This syndrome if only telling bad jokes is not harmful, but if doing crack can lead to death.

Now her daughter suffers from this syndrome.  How do I know?  Back to my gossip sites for reference.  Bobbi Christina absolutely devastated when hearing of her mother’s death had some alcoholic drinks (girl is 19 – who is serving this girl alcoholic drinks) and then someone in the “entourage” gives her either a sedative or tranquilizer and shocker the two don’t mix and she ends up hospitalized the same day her mother winds up dead.  This is the same 19 year old show has pictures of her allegedly snorting coke on these same gossip sites and it is rumored there is a sex tape out there of her.  I pray that Bobbi Christina does not end up going down the same path as her mother.  I think we all do.

Where is Whitney’s long time love Bobby while his ex-wife is dead and his daughter Bobbi has overdosed?  On stage of course.  He decides that the best place for him to be is grieving in front of his adoring fans.  Who told him this is a good idea?  Now sense is something this character does not posses much of as witnessed by my 20 minutes of watching the reality show.  Wasn’t someone there to suggest to Bobby that his suffering daughter who is receiving booze and prescription drugs from Whitney’s “entourage” might need him?  He is her father after all.  Anyway, sure enough he breaks down on stage in a very public grieving statement.  Of course I read this in a headline which I would not have read about if he were to grieve privately.  Go figure.

Jennifer Hudson provided us with an amazing tribute during the Grammy performance last night.  Singing one of Whitney’s signature songs she paid tribute to her idol and reminded us of many things.  First, we will miss and have been missing the Whitney of about 10 years ago.  The one who could sing with such power and soul.  The Whitney who could make us think, make us feel and make us love.  That Whitney died long ago.  Taken by drugs that ravaged her voice and her body and left her unable to provide us with the joys of songs from her gift.  The other thing Jennifer reminded us of was that there are others who can sing just as powerful with just as much passion and just as much spirit.  Singers like Jennifer and Adele will hopefully be with us much longer than Whitney.  Whitney may have had a gift from God, but it was not God’s only gift.  Jennifer reminded us of that last night.  Jennifer received that same gift from God.   God bless all the singers out there who can still provide us with the beautiful gifts of their voice.  We who do not possess these gifts crave it.  I hope now Whitney can rest in peace.

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