Celebrities performances vs. personal lives: The divide



Former Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins smiles at the camera.

Carson Knebel, Student Life Editor

In today’s social media filled world, it has become increasingly difficult to separate celebrities’ lives in the spotlight from their personal lives and feelings. Oftentimes, common people get so caught up in the performances of celebrities that they completely forget that they are humans with feelings, too.

Our world’s culture has put celebrities up on such a pedestal to the point where people forget that they are people with families and feelings. This has caused an era of dehumanization among celebrities. This is exactly what has happened after the death of NFL quarterback Dwayne Haskins.

Haskins was attempting to cross a highway on the morning of Saturday, April 9 when he was struck by oncoming traffic. ESPN analyst Adam Shefter first reported the incident via Twitter, stating, “Dwayne Haskins, a standout at Ohio State before struggling to catch on with Washington and Pittsburgh in the NFL, died this morning when he got hit by a car in south Florida.”

Shefter later deleted the tweet, but the damage had already been done. Many took to Twitter to express their feelings about Shefter’s report. Nobody understood why Shefter felt the need to mention Haskins’ struggles in the NFL when reporting his death.

Cardale Jones, one of Haskins’s former teammates at Ohio State University replied to Shefter, “How about Dwayne Haskins, son, husband, buckeye brother, friend, beloved teammate has passed away,” Jones stated on Twitter. “… Let his family & friends grieve instead of throwing shade. Praying for the Haskins family!!”

Unfortunately, this has become the norm in our world. People often find it extremely difficult to separate celebrities’ performances in their careers from their personal feelings and relationships. It is a subconscious thing that people often do not even realize they are doing.

Shefter later apologized via Twitter. “I wanted to address the death of Dwayne Haskins and the tweet that I posted this weekend. It was insensitive; it was a mistake, and I can assure you it is not my intention. I wish I could have that tweet back,” he said. The focus should have been on Dwayne, who he was as a person, a husband, a friend, and so much more. I wanted to apologize to Dwayne’s family, his friends, the players in the National Football League and offer my condolences to everybody close to Dwayne.”

Shefter has a history of insensitive and poorly-worded tweets, so the apology was not received well amongst the NFL community. Regardless, it is important to remember that performers are more than just what they appear to be on stage, on the field or wherever they might be seen. People must remember that they are humans, too, and their lives outside of their fame are more important than their lives in the spotlight.