I’ve seen this topic float around for quite some time now….
And with the recent non-indictments in the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, it’s becoming harder and harder to ignore the unrest and racial divide in our beloved
police state country. Yet, there has been quite the backlash to those asking why their favorite celebrities haven’t said anything in regards to gross injustice that have left many of us more baffled than we’ve ever been before.
Today, I want to address a topic that up until now, has not seen any real resolution to it. The question of “why do you all care about what the celebs have to say about these non-indictment?” is one that needs to be put to rest once and for all. And for the sake of this post, I’m not talking about the “educated few” among us that think their opinion is the way of the world and can make an informed decision without the need for a cosign. I’m talking about the public opinion, which is arguably the most important thing to a movement of any kind.
A lot of us loathe the institution that is the paparazzi and the “celebrity” mindset most days out of the year. The glorification of those that are famous because of their talents irks us to no end, mostly because a majority of us work just as hard and aren’t a part of the selected few that rise to fame and seemingly endless means. However unknowingly, it leads to a certain resentment from those of us working on the ground levels of the good fight when a movement gets recognized when our celebrity counterparts start acknowledging it – long after we’ve started the work. I understand the frustration completely, but unfortunately, it’s the way of the world that we live in. And while I agree with the bullshit that is society and that our people need to move out of that way of thinking, we have to work within it in order for the message to be received.
We tend to live in a bubble when it comes to awareness(and education, tbh), however you must remember that a majority of the world only receive their news from their favorite television stations, which aren’t always showcasing the grassroots campaign or the regular folks trying to walk for justice. And when those people, who are the public opinion, don’t see a person like LeBron James or Kanye West talk about the injustices that Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and countless others around the country, they begin to question the validity of it all, regardless of the facts that you present. Stupid? Yes, but it is the truth. People form irrational opinions everyday, and though you might not understand why groupthink exists, it is important to note that it’s there and how to work within it.
While it might not matter to you what your favorite singer or famous personality have to say, the fact of the matter is that these people matter in the sway of public opinion. While I understand the notion that “who cares what Kanye West thinks, do what you want!”, humans are naturally pre-depositioned to adhere to believe in what people with influence think on certain issues. People are more apt to listen to and/or take a stance on issues when those of great influence take a similar stance on the issue. Like it or not, we need people like Beyonce and Jay-Z creating a buzz and bringing attention to the movement against police brutality and racial injustice. Though at the end of the day, they may just be “regular people” they do have a following that grossly out ranges yours or any of the humble protesters fighting for peace. So, the next time you decide to shame someone for questioning why certain people haven’t said anything in the media in regards to a this or any cause, remember this post and that your mindset is not that of everyone else around you. The ultimate goal is to make the people who are out there day after day fighting for the civil rights for all of us the real celebrity – while using the people who already have an influence to propel them forward.