When tragedy strikes on a global level like the Ariana Grande concert terrorist attack in Manchester, there’s quite a bit of damage control, PR, and handling that goes into it after.
Let’s check in to see how Ari and the rest of the world are handling it.
In case you’ve been under a rock, on May 22, 2017, as concert goers were leaving the Manchester Arena in Manchester England, a suicide-bomber, Salmon Abedi, a 22 year old British Muslim extremist set off a shrapnel bomb. Including Abedi, 22 men, women and children were killed, and at least 116 were injured, some critically. The world got hit with one more act of hate, that affected the entire globe. ISIS immediately took credit for the attack.
Ariana Grande, no stranger to “scandal” herself, immediately released a twitter statement that simply said, “broken. from the bottom of my heart i am so sorry, i don’t have words.”
Some immediately criticized the pop star for the tweet. Others took the opportunity to place blame. In 2015, Grande was videotaped licking donuts in a donut shop on the display counter and saying “What the fuck is this? I hate America. I hate Americans. That is disgusting.” She later apologized for the incident, saying basically, that it really sucks to have your worst behavior caught on camera. She was embarrassed and sorry.
After the attacks, many people tweeted to the young star epithets and insults ranging from innocuous to downright threatening.
But how has her team handled it? She wrote a long letter you can read here. She paused her tour. She and her team have organized a benefit concert for Manchester with tickets for original concert goers for free, and the proceeds from the rest going directly to benefit the victims - and invited world class acts such as Justin Bieber, Coldplay, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Pharrell Williams, Usher, Take That, and Niall Horan on June 4th.
At 23, Ariana Grande is just a kid herself. Think about that. What kind of awesome decisions were you making at 23 years old? And here, this 23 year old kid has the weight of the tragedy on her shoulders, and the eyes of the world upon her.
We are impressed with how she’s handled it. Grace, dignity, poise and compassion. And the rest of the world isn’t doing so bad either (save for some haters on social media).
The takeaway in a situation like this is we can all come together. It can be handled well, with dignity and humanity. And the courage for this young pop princess to head back to Manchester to a new event, I think is unparalleled.
By Marc DeLeuw