Letter to the Editor: Concerning Greta Thunberg | Nvdaily | nvdaily.com – Northern Virginia Daily

Posted: December 25, 2019 at 4:44 pm

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I like and admire Greta Thunberg. I'm also worried about her future.

Greta is a bright and well-spoken 16 year-old girl, with documented behavioral and cognitive challenges that register on the autism scale. She meets these disadvantages with dignity and self-awareness. I consider her a victor over adversity, and a champion for others like her.

So why should I worry about her? Because I see her being fed into what I call the "Celebrity Meatgrinder."

I don't know who's handling her, coaching her, or holding her out of school. I don't know who made the decision to send her on a 15-day, 3,500 nautical-mile journey across the Atlantic Ocean through rough seas - in an open sailboat with no kitchen, shower or toilet - to attend a scientific conference and be feted like a Kardashian. I strongly suspect some people are profiting off her notoriety. Further, I doubt that her long-term interests are being served by people and groups promoting their political and/or showbiz agendas through her.

Few people - and fewer children - escape happy or whole from the "Celebrity Meatgrinder." We know how it works; they build you up, then tear you down. It starts with red carpets and magazine covers (she is now Time Magazine's 2019 "Person of the Year"), then ends with tabloids, court cases and "where are they now?"

Maybe I'm worrying over nothing. Perhaps young Greta, for all the hurdles she faces, really is the one calling the shots - a pint-sized cross between Svengali and Machiavelli. Maybe she's writing the speeches, managing the media, arranging the travel, setting up the press conferences and interviews, and leading the negotiations with book publishers.

Instead, I fear she is being used as a stage prop - a willing but perhaps too-trusting pawn in a dangerous game she may not fully understand. If so, I truly pity her manipulators.

If she wants it, I hope Greta Thunberg regains her chance to be a child, before she faces adulthood as a faded sideshow attraction.

David Christovich, Woodstock

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Letter to the Editor: Concerning Greta Thunberg | Nvdaily | nvdaily.com - Northern Virginia Daily

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