Home > Current Events, Entertainment, General > Chris Christie under fire for flying flag at half mast to honor Whitney Houston

Chris Christie under fire for flying flag at half mast to honor Whitney Houston

February 18th, 2012

 

Today Whitney Houston will be layed to rest. Her untimely death knocked her fans for a loop. The cause of death has not been released but that hasn’t kept the public from speculating and blaming her not-so-private addiction problems. The truth is, no one knows what was the cause of her death.

Meanwhile, the controversial New Jersey governor, Chris Christie has ordered the flag to be flown at half mast on all government buildings  in honor of Whitney Houston. Sadly, he has been under a barrage of criticism for honoring Houston in this manner. One of his harshest critics has been a woman whose son was killed last month in Afghanistan. Much of the criticism has been that we shouldn’t be honoring pop stars, especially ones who have died from addiction problems.

While Chris Christie chose to show class, others decided to be an ass.  From the LATimes.com:

 

With Whitney Houston’s funeral looming Saturday in her home state, controversies surrounding her death bubbled up on both coasts, one involving New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and the other involving Los Angeles talk-radio hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampiou, who were suspended Thursday after insensitive comments about the dead singer.

Christie found himself defending his Tuesday decision to have state government buildings’ flags lowered to half-staff on the day of Houston’s funeral.

“I am disturbed by people who believe that because her ultimate demise — and we don’t know what is the cause of her death yet — but because of her history of substance abuse that somehow she’s forfeited the good things that she did in her life,” the governor said at a news briefing Thursday. “I just reject that on a human level.”

On Twitter, he pointed out, “Flag being lowered for her cultural contributions as an artist & New Jerseyan. Her struggles w/substance abuse r a diff topic.” He also noted that during his time in office flags had also been lowered for 31 fallen soldiers from the state as well as all fallen police officers.

Meanwhile, radio station KFI hosts Kobylt and Chiampou were suspended “for making insensitive and inappropriate comments about the late Whitney Houston,” KFI said in a statement on its website. “KFI AM 640 Management does not condone, support or tolerate statements of this kind.”

The DJs on Wednesday had called Houston a “crack ho” and referred to her as “cracked out for 20 years” — she’d publicly denied smoking crack — with Kobylt saying, “Then you find out she’s dead and it’s like, really, it took this long?'” Additional slams can be heard in audio from the show, posted by Urban Informer.

“We made a mistake, and we accept the station’s decision,” Kobylt said in the statement. ‘”We used language that was inappropriate, and we sincerely apologize to our listeners and to the family of Ms. Houston.'”

Shame on the critics. Christie is perfectly correct in honoring Whitney Houston. She grew up in Newark, sang in church there every Sunday, and never forgot where she came from. She had a house in the area and gave back to poverty stricken Newark. Additionally, we can’t overlook the fact that Whitney Houston was a lady of great talent, a talent that spans 4 decades.

Houston was honest about her struggles with substance abuse but I never heard her glorify drugs or booze. She was a beautiful lady with a beautiful voice and Chris Christie did the right thing for saluting her craftsmanship and talent.

Her funeral is invitation only and can be  seen on the internet at http://www.cbsnews.com/2718-100_162-730.html?tag=contentMain;contentBody or on CBS.

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  1. Emma
    February 18th, 2012 at 08:35 | #1

    Maybe the reason so many celebrities lives end tragically is because of all the inflated importance we attach to them, and the superhuman expectations we foist upon their body images. They’re not heroes, but somehow we make them larger than life. Meanwhile, men and women-real heroes– die in Afghanistan, and we’re so far removed from it all that their sacrifice goes ignored.

    Fly flags for everyone, create a ribbon for every cause–whatever it is, it’s all so overdone and cheapened now that it really doesn’t mean much anyway.

  2. Elena
    February 18th, 2012 at 09:32 | #2

    Whitney Houston was more than a singer in her heyday. She took a very public stand against apartheid and spoke out to free Nelson Mendela in a time when it was not popular. She had numerous foundations to help those in need. She was more than a singer.

    • February 18th, 2012 at 10:13 | #3

      She also never forgot where she came from. The same can be said for all those famous Jersey entertainers: Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, Jon Stewart just to name a few. We know they are from Jersey because they tell us.

  3. February 18th, 2012 at 10:17 | #4

    Is Christie right to order the flags at half mast? Does it detract from those killed in battle?

  4. February 18th, 2012 at 13:40 | #5

    The Whitney Houston funeral has been quite spectacular. I enjoyed hearing Kevin Cosner. The Body Guard will always be one of my favorite films. Alicia Keyes is now singing.

  5. February 18th, 2012 at 13:50 | #6

    What’s wrong with this picture?

    http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS/national.php?year=1968

    I thought we were going to have to ask for a recall for a brief moment. Moral of the story, assume nothing and read the map legend.

  6. February 18th, 2012 at 13:59 | #7

    Is there no end to this egotistical toad?

    Each of the 1,500 invitations to Whitney Houston’s funeral in Newark, NJ admits just one, but apparently her ex-husband Bobby Brown did not receive that memo.

    According to New Jersey paper The Star Ledger, the R&B singer, 43, arrived outside of the New Hope Baptist Church Saturday afternoon with an entourage of nine people in tow, demanding that they all get seats in the front row.

    PHOTOS: Whitney and Bobby’s family album

    The paper adds that Brown himself was allowed in, but he opted to leave with the rest of the people not admitted.

    “He was allowed to go in, pay his respects and then he had to leave,”

    Read more: http://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-news/news/red-eyed-bobby-brown-leaves-whitney-houstons-funeral-with-posse-in-tow-2012182#ixzz1mlGSihl5

    I guess all that bull about being there for his daughter was just that…pure bull. Once again it was all about him.

  7. February 18th, 2012 at 14:05 | #8

    @Emma

    That just seems to be the tone that was set in the beginning. Our job was to go about our daily lives. Their job was to take the battle over there. George Bush unwittingly set that scene. The American people never had to sacrifice anything if they weren’t military families.

    I always had a problem with that.

    People who deserve honor or a salute come in many different forms. 4 decades of beautiful song is a huge gift.

  8. Kelly_3406
    February 19th, 2012 at 10:59 | #9

    It was a tragedy that such a great talent was lost at such an early age. However, Christie’s decision to lower the flag to half staff in her honor raised a few eyebrows (including my own). I usually view such an honor to be reserved for people that perform extremely selfless acts or have a history of extraordinary service to the nation. I am not sure that she fits those categories, even though she has spoken out on issues or donated money. To me, that is just being a good citizen. Nevertheless, this is not something that I would make a huge fuss over.

  9. Rick Bentley
    February 23rd, 2012 at 17:03 | #10

    I don’t agree at all with using our government to honor a pop star, just because they are popular. It’s shameful IMO.

    • February 23rd, 2012 at 19:59 | #11

      It could be argued that she was far more than a pop star. How about cities that honor favorite sons and daughters by lowering the flags and other special recognition? Grand Marshalls? That is done all the time. If government doesn’t honor, how do we collectively honor?

      Who do we honor? Do we just honor government employees like military and dead politians? Can other people have places of honor in society?

      @Rick

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