I have just turned off the TV after watching the finale of American Idol. David Cook became the American Idol, and I agreed with Simon that it did not really matter who won this year, as both were brilliant.
Of course, after yesterday's Simon's statement to little David "you came here to win, but it was a knockout", I personally thought that David Cook lost. He didn't, and that was fine. No big deal. Well, it depends how you look at it.
It was by 12 million votes that he beat David Archuleta. I spoke to several compatriots and turned out we all were sure that after yesterday Simon's remarks the fate of American Idol was securely in the hands of Archuleta.
Of course, I am pretty sure that a lot of Americans were thinking the same way, this is not the point. The point is that if it were in Russia, where a popular member of the jury, or a host, or a politician gives publicly such an assessment, David Cook would not have had a chance of winning. People would not have voted for him.
I have to do some explanation here as I can have readers shaking their heads in disbelief. This is not a scientific research, this is my take on certain things in life, and whether it is supported by some scientific data or not, I do not know.
Here's what I am coming at. We are different. Americans tend to think that people around the world are pretty much the same, provided they have the same opportunities. Noble view, but as far from the reality as it can only be. We are the same only biologically. We are different in everything else.
Here's the real life example. In Kiev somewhere in the 60s or 70s the researches made the experiment. They took a group of 30 middle school kids and brought them to the museum. There was a painting. It was a colored square. I do not remember the color, and it is irrelevant. Let's say it was green. 29 kids were rehearsed what to do, and one girl wasn't. So the teacher pointed to the picture and said that it was depicting a black square.
The girl was surprised and said that it was green. The teacher turned to the kids and asked them what color was the square. The kids said it was black. I remember watching this video recording. The girl was very confused. But everuone was saying that it was black, so when the teacher asked her again, the girl said it was black.
In any totalitarian regime the power of a group is so significant, that everybody learn to be like others, to think like others, and to behave like others. This is vital for surviving. Because under any totalitarian regime everything that is different from the majority, is the enemy. Your survival depends on being with the majority, associating yourself with the majority. The society functions by the majority rule.
I am not an expert, but I strongly believe now that if you do hte same test in America, the kid would not say black as easy. There is no danger to be different.
In a Russian environment, if an influential person says that this was won by a knockout, it is a sign for the majority. In a totalitarian regime it can't be any other way. And any voice on the TV is the influential voice as TV is the way of the Regime to influence the people. If they say this guy won, and the people vote the opposite, then this is a revolt, and tanks would have been brought in as it happened so many times in Russian history.
It goes way deeper than what I am showing here, and I may return to that some day, but what I wanted to say is that this voting for the American Idol could not have happened the same way in Russia, Cuba, North Korea, and in many other countries. By the way, they all have similar contests, pretty similar... but still different.
And after seeing this with my own eyes, and knowing that 12 million Americans did not have a problem to not listen to Simon Cowell, I know that no matter what is said, nobody can force Americans to vote for the President that they do not like. Yes, you can fight for the votes all day long, but you can't create any artificial majority. Because this is America. Whether we like this President or not.
This is what makes this country different. This is what makes it great. We can and should be proud of it. It is a heck of a task for generations ahead in some other countries.