November 16, 2018

BY Cassidy Foulds

Take a few moments to imagine something: You’re completely broke, but you’re being forced to throw someone an extravagant birthday party. The costs from this party put you into debt, but at least someone had a great special day. You grit your teeth through it all, smile as best you can and say that you can pull this off, even though you’ve been pretty clear about just how penniless you are. Your guests have taken note of your financial situation, but they’ve avoided talking about it – instead focusing on the party.

If you’ve been keeping up with the news, it might be pretty obvious that I am talking about the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Some people, even those who watched the Olympics, were completely unaware of Brazil’s problems. I’m not trying to rain on anyone’s parade, but the truth is that Brazil hit a serious financial crisis earlier this year, and hosting the Olympics did not remedy the situation. This sounds pretty severe. And, yet, where is the media coverage?

And what about the war that’s going on in Syria? The Syrian conflict has such a global impact. Thousands of Syrian refugees have been uprooted and scattered across the world. How are we not doing more about this? Yes, news stations are happy enough to do a 20-part series on this conflict, and, yes, we can only harp on the subject for so long before we start to get tired of hearing about it. But I think there’s a problem when Canadians only hear about the Syrian conflict after ISIS beheads someone on video.

There is an overwhelming number of things that are going wrong in the world, many terrifying. But ignoring them isn’t the answer.

It never really bothered me until this was brought up in discussion. I never really realized how we focus more on clowns like Donald Trump than the oil pipelines that could damage culturally significant sites belonging to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota. We focus more on hating First World white feminism than helping to improve the conditions of women living in Second and Third World countries. We completely glaze over the fact that there seems to be a transgendered person being killed weekly, but there’s more talk about the controversial transgender-friendly bathrooms because, heaven forbid, a transgendered person has to tinkle.

There’s something disturbing about the fact that people aren’t more exposed to these kinds of topics. It’s impossible to stay caught up on every breaking story in the news, but, the next time you go to see what new line of makeup Kylie Jenner has put out, or who won a gold medal in the Olympics, try something new. See what’s going on in Syria, or read about the young Mexican boy who stood up to thousands of anti-LGBTQ protesters. Don’t just settle for your local and celeb news. I know I won’t.

 

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