Last Friday, children at Tufts Medical Center in Boston got a visit they won’t likely forget — from the cast of the new, all-female Ghostbusters film slated for release next year.
Understandably moved by the heartwarming gesture, the Tufts team took to their Facebook page over the weekend to thank Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones for visiting, and to post pictures of the ladies — proton packs and all — giving credence to the idiom, “Laughter is the best medicine.”
Sadly, though, Internet trolls of the world obviously missed the memo that this was a good deed posted on a children’s hospital page and not a members-only forum for misogynists. Heretofore, my hope for the human race took a credible hit upon reading the comments of these poor, misguided souls.
Some people inexplicably decided this was the appropriate time and place to discuss casting and costume decisions.
Others outright claimed the benevolent act was purely a publicity stunt.
Never mind the fact that the cast is filming nearby and had simply “accepted the call” from pediatric patients at the hospital, or the fact that they did not take nor post the pictures.
Then there were many (many!) others who simply felt the need to express their displeasure over the new franchise.
And, even still, there were some who claimed the gesture was made null by the fact that, uh, these actresses aren’t famous enough?!
In fact, the comments became so racist, sexist and vile that the hospital had to remind the public that their Facebook policy includes deleting explicit comments. It boggles the mind that this is happening on a hospital’s social media post about celebrities visiting sick children.
One male even went so far as to suggest it would be funny if Kristen Wiig dropped the “sick baby” she was holding. Tufts has since deleted the comment, and rightfully so. At the very least, it qualifies as morally profane and deserving of deletion.
Alas, men weren’t the only ones weighing in with insensitive, inappropriate and gloriously unsolicited comments, though. Clearly (plus, dismaying), women also took time out of their presumably busy days to discredit the female-driven film. On a hospital’s Facebook page, no less (yes, that bears repeating).
That these people even deigned to have this dialogue on Tufts’ page and on this particular post is purely pathetic. Oh, so you have an opinion about the new Ghostbusters reboot? Hey, so do I. In all likelihood, so does that guy who sat next to you on the subway this morning. His cousin probably does too (read: everyone).
But here — on a hospital’s post about the cast and crew of an upcoming film putting a temporary halt to production to bring smiles to sick children’s faces — is not the time or place to share those opinions.
This is a place to celebrate victories. Because, in the life of a sick child, even the smallest triumphs can seem monumental. So, yes, having these celebrities stop by and make them feel special is a big deal. It’s a big deal to those kids, some of whom can only dream about stealing a few hours outside of the sterility of the hospital to see a movie in an actual movie theater.
It’s a big deal to their parents, who spend every waking moment wishing they could take away their kids’ pain, if only for an hour.
When Chris Pratt and Chris Evans visited Christopher’s Haven (also in Boston) back in February, no one picketed anyone’s social media pages. In fact, the guys were heralded as “real-life superheroes.” Their kindness wasn’t treated as a publicity stunt, because it wasn’t.
Just like it isn’t now.
If you can’t help but misconstrue a random act of goodness as having some ulterior motive or not being good enough, that says far more about the state of your conscience than it does about the act itself.
As for that prominent percentage of men who wouldn’t dare entertain the notion that they are, in fact, misplaced in their ire over the Ghostbusters‘ hospital visit, well, I say they’ll likely soon find themselves on the receiving end of a swift kick in their “keyboard balls” from karma.