Pop culture gossip overshadows important world news
Tragedy struck many on the evening of Aug. 25, as millions of people in North America caught sight, even mere glimpses, of twerking, grinding and other feigned sexual acts.
Within minutes, social media outlets began to blow up as appalled viewers criticized Miley Cyrus’ controversial performance with Robin Thicke. Both millionaires took the stage with what was judged to be obscene gestures and questionable attire. For weeks this performance outshone headlines such as “Obama weighs possible military response,” “Hurricane Irene heads toward land,” and “Random shooting spree in New York.” All of these issues seemed to slip past us as we stressed and wondered about the pop princess’s downward spiral.
Why are we so numb to the issues impacting not only ourselves, but millions of people fighting every day for survival? Pop culture has worked its way into newspapers, news stations, radio, magazines, film and television. It can be found in curriculums, where educators lead discussions on current events and issues. It can be found on billboards, buses and social networks. Our lives are being consumed with “who wore it best?” “fashion don’ts,” and many more pointless discussions. It seems that people are shying away from what is really important.
I ask that you pull yourself out of pop culture and dive into the social and economical crises across the globe. Issues like militia invasions, poor labour conditions and the stripping of human rights need your awareness and engagement. Take a look around you and see what many have fought for you to have. Take a minute to think about the innocent people of Syria who may surely perish at the U.S.’s “humanitarian” bombs. I ask that you take a minute to think about the people of Guatemala who have had land stolen from them so the Canadian and US mining companies may collect their gold. I ask that you take a minute and ask yourself, who is fighting for them?
It is great that we have privileges such as forms of entertainment and great that we may enjoy them, but it also important that we acknowledge the individuals who fought for such freedom. Many of us essentially have all our needs at our fingertips and maybe even more, but for every extra we have, someone out there lacks a basic need. They lack shelter, food, water and equality.
Around us are many opportunities to get involved and simply become educated about the situations occurring around the globe. Most importantly, being educated is a necessary start. We play an important part in most of these issues and can become an even larger part if we actively participate. So let us unplug from pop culture and get plugged into the world around us.