Friday, December 5, 2014

Mark Wahlberg beat an Asian man so hard that he lost an eye, wants a pardon

I force myself to try to separate entertainment from the human beings underneath, but sometimes, I  get annoyed knowing that some stars seem to never be held accountable for their lascivious actions while there are normal people in the United States who get murdered for selling loose cigarettes or walking around at night in a hoodie. I suppose that I'm just ranting, but this headline from The Week this morning really got to me.

"Mark Wahlberg Should Not Be Pardoned."

I agree with the article and the headline, but it was the fact that Mark Wahlberg was requesting a pardon that really irked me. For those who do not know the back story, when Mark Wahlberg was 16 he drunkenly beat an Asian immigrant with a wooden stick until the man fell to the ground, unconscious. Later that same night, he found another Asian man that he called "gook" and "slant eye," and he beat that man so hard in the face that he LOST HIS RIGHT EYE.

Mark was arrested, convicted, and served 45 days in jail. This year, twenty-six years later, he applied for an official pardon because he changed his life and spent the rest of his days serving the community. On his pardon application, he stated that he believes the story of his turnaround will inspire others to do the same.

There is no doubt in my mind that Mark Wahlberg is an inspiration to many for his work in the arts and his philanthropy, and although I've never met him, he seems like a nice, humble guy. But a pardon should not be granted because his violent action, no matter if drunk or high, no matter if young, should never be forgotten. He didn't steal a loaf of bread, make moonshine, or get in a fist fight. He violently beat two strangers and nearly cost them their lives, and he left one of them with a visible, physical reminder of that horrific night 26 years ago. Although America may be laughing along at Ted or Pain and Gain, I really doubt his victims are.

No, Mark Wahlberg, Roman Polanski, Mike Tyson, and celebs who were never formally convicted. Time does not erase your reprehensible actions. The fact that he thinks Hollywood success deserves an earning of forgiveness, not him trying to make right with the victims, their families, and the Asian community says a ton about how fucking entitled and insensitive successful people are. Pardons are rarely given, and if they are, they are for non-violent offenses.

Even if his victims forgave him, which there is no evidence that they have, Wahlberg shouldn't have asked to wipe his slate clean because he doesn't deserve it. No matter how rich, famous, and likeable you've become, you must face your demons, not erase them.

"Mark Wahlbeg should not be pardoned" from The Week

3 comments:

  1. Agreed. I've never been on the Wahlberg train. Something about him makes me really uncomfortable -- that creepy feeling that there's some racism there.

    Very interesting that he didn't pursue an expungement instead of going this route.

    But I must say that Mike Tyson and Wahlberg served their time. Their debt to society is paid. Polanski's case seems quite different as he fled after negotiating a plea deal. He is still a fugitive.

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  2. It's sad that you see this inequality of opportunity for pardon and you advocate denying it to everyone rather than extending it to all who deserve it.

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