What if Britney Spears became a Freemason?
I know it’s a bit of an outlandish idea, and that few would readily take it seriously, or even believe a headline like the above, but in the magical world of “what if”, imagine for a moment that just such a story were hit the media outlets to say that the performer had entered the pillared threshold of a Co-Masonic lodge and undertaken the degrees of the fraternity.
Would it really be news worthy, or would it be just an interesting tidbit of information with no real net affect to the public perception? Would her visits to lodges be chronicled by the likes of Perez Hilton or TMZ, or would her interaction with the craft be ignored for more interesting news of the day?
On the other end of the spectrum, what would Britney possibly take away from the degrees? Would the allegories and symbolism of the craft be taken with any degree of seriousness and austerity or would it be a just another thing to do like collecting Chihuahuas or magazine covers with her portrait on them? I suppose the question could be distilled down to ask would she learn something from the degrees?
In the long run the path of this imagine doesn’t really matter, that the likelihood of her becoming a Mason are about as high as a pig sprouting wings and flying, but the exercise going through the “what if” scenario is reminiscent to me of the era of Freemasonry that courted and brought in the nobility of England in the 1700’s which at that time led it to a greater degree of credibility and public standing and thereby increased its ranks and social interest with its line of Duke’s, Earl’s, and Princes as Grand Masters. In other words, we can obviously see that the publicity helped grow the organization. Is it that celebrity factor that is missing today? And if so, then what is the measurable benefit besides an increased public awareness and acceptance that is gained by such celebrity?
Interestingly, the Shrine has tapped the fame of Justin Timberlake as their spokesman for their celebrity golf tournament in Las Vegas, but it does not suggest that he is a Masons, merely a spokesman for its event. I wonder what the difference would be if he were to wear the apron (or fez) and it was publicized to the media at large? Is that the credibility boost that is lacking today as the past vanguards of entertainment such as John Wayne or Red Skelton begin to eclipse to the new and younger generation?
Is it a lack of A-list celebrities in the media age of tabloid news and infotainment that has Masonry slipping back into the quiet recesses of obscurity?
Maybe the fraternity needs a Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie (or both) to don the apron and make being a Mason cool again like it was in the era of Prince Albert Edward at the turn of the 20th Century.
But imagine if Britney took the oath, what would the face of Masonry look like then?