Are we regressing as a nation?

It’s disheartening to see the headlines that are in the news today. We all know the media is slanted and I actually believe that a lot of it needs to be taken with a grain of salt but there are trends that are repeatedly exposed and that includes RACISM, INEQUALITY and BULLYING. Obviously, the most popular and tragic case is with the murder of Travyon Martin and the total disregard for justice to be served. We also have fans of the book and movie “Hunger Games” demonstrating racism towards the African American that was cast in the role of Rue, although the character is actually described as having brown skin in the novel. Not long ago, we had Rush Limbaugh making crude comments towards a law student out of a basic lack of respect for her stance on a healthcare reform topic. Then we have 12 year old girls luring another girl to a fake slumber party, only to be later videotaped beating the girl senseless. Need I go on?

Here is my two cents. Anytime equality, justice and common decency is threatened, we all have a responsibility to start speaking up just as we have been doing with the Travyon Martin case. The rallies that have been held across the country send a clear message that this type of injustice is no longer going to be tolerated. The ignorant fans that tweeted their disgust at having an African American character are now receiving the backlash to their inappropriate comments. Again, this shows that the general public is willing to go tit for tat on social media venues and will no longer tolerate one sided mentalities. Even at that, the very fact that more people are actually defending the casting of Rue as opposed to those who are against it shows that we are no longer allowing a few bad apples ruin success. We showed Rush Limbaugh that money talks, so we can make it walk when he made his stupid comments that he later apologized for, but only after losing sponsorship. And as for those 12 year olds, thankfully their outrageous bullying tactic was videotaped and that tape is being utilized to aid in a swift punishment for their actions.

I realize we have a long ways to go and it may even appear that we are regressing but I encourage everyone to educate themselves on everything that is displayed in the media. If we only read the headlines and not the fine details, we will never get a clear picture of the state of our nation. Controversy is a topic I blogged about previously and it is utilized to capture attention, plain and simple. However, if you look beyond the flashy titles and delve deeper into most articles and news stories, you will not be distracted from the real issue at stake. For example, racism is the distraction for the Travyon Martin case when it is more about injustice than it is about race. The rallies held for Travyon are composed of a mixture of races and has successfully called national attention to a long standing issue concerning individuals being gunned down needlessly. If you read various new sources via the web, it is not only defenseless African Americans losing their lives but Asians, Hispanics and Indians are also targets in this case. Look at the situation in France where a Jewish school was attacked solely based on their religion. The media will lead us to believe that African Americans are simply making it a race issue and that we feel we are the only ones being discriminated against when the majority of us will tell you that we simply want justice to be served and Zimmerman to be charged just as anyone else would be in this situation. Obviously in this case, there is a very real racial issue in that area of Florida but now that Trayvon’s parents have spoke up and out, progress is slowly being made towards a change.

In regards to the “Hunger Games” issue, these comments were made by a few idiots on twitter when actually more people defended the casting of the Rue character than those who were against it. It actually was not even news enough to make into a story since the movie has already grossed 155 million, showing that not too many were even bothered by the casting. Even with Rush Limbaugh, more articles were written about his crazy comments than his apology and the loss of his sponsorship by his foolish actions. Once again, progress was made. Schools all across the nation are addressing bullying and parents are now having better conversations with their children to ensure that they are made of aware of any issues that need to be addressed with school administrators.

In essence, what I am pointing out is that for every ounce of ignorance, there is a pound of backlash that is not always displayed in the media. Does racism exist? Yes it does. Will we always have inequality? Yes we will. Will there always be bullies? Yes there will be and there always has been. None of these issues are new and they are not going away. We need to remember that no one promised us life would be fair and accept this fact. However, it is our responsibility to ensure that we keep fighting against these types of ignorance and continuing to make the strides we have as a nation. I am not a naïve person, I just make damn sure I have all the facts before I form an opinion and run off at the mouth. I do this by reading, reading and reading some more because let’s face it, the facts are not always televised or obvious. I listen more than I speak and I do not operate off of hearsay. As long as I see that we are all making it clear that we are not going to tolerate these issues, I will continue to give props where they are due.

If you have an issue, SPEAK UP and SPEAK OUT!! All our state agencies have online forms that can be completed and electronically sent to file complaints. Most of us completed a petition to support the Travyon Martin case or attended a rally, some of us did both. I know for a fact that I have filed complaints with the Texas Education Agency concerning bullying in the schools. As a matter of fact, I make sure my voice is heard regularly by voting, getting involved and standing up for what I believe in (just ask my family LOL). So you see, we all have a voice, we just need to continue to use it. I encourage us all to pushback on everything that needs to be corrected, what does it hurt? Believe me, if we all take a few minutes out of our day to address nonsense, someone will have to take notice. It’s not going to change overnight and sometimes we may not receive the results we want but believe you me, the more it is addressed, the closer we come to a resolution. There are truly strength in numbers and I believe we are witnessing that more and more every day.

Until next time, keep on keeping on being the best you that you can be!

Mara Prose

3 responses to “Are we regressing as a nation?”

  1. Are we regressing as a nation?…. As always, well said sis. We are not regressing because these are not new issues, they are just in different packaging.

    Not only must we learn to speak up and speak out, we must also take a stance against promoting the ignorance that is often times publicized. Until we respect ourselves and show others that we are more than sex and violence, then we really can not expect much change. So before they speak up or out, they need to educate themselves and learn what really matters. Stand tall in our communities, young men need to pull their clothes up and young women need to put some on. Why is clothing an issue for our young people, everyone wants to have their ass out!! I could go on and on, but this is your moment. Great job sis. Much love and respect to you for bringing awareness on issues that are often overlooked. Be blessed,

  2. We are regressing as ‘Human beings’. Be it any nation, Human traits & moral values are declining. There is no doubt about this, but then whom should we blame?
    Is it not because of our own ‘Inaction’? Hallow words don’t improve the situation, and hence, each one of us has to play his/ her role with sincerity and commitment.
    Why point out to ‘present youth only?’, are we nurturing our children in a manner to make them grow up as responsible youths of tomorrow?
    Children do not learn by what they are advised or taught but what they observe and we, parents are their ‘Role Models’. If we wish our children to be good human beings of tomorrow, we ourselves have to control our acts accordingly.

    1. While I get where you are coming from and I don’t necessarily disagree, I believe there is nothing new under the sun. The point is that people are beginning to put their foot down about the inhumane acts that go on in this world and that we need to stop feeding so much into the sensationalism of the media.

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