To Be Honest . . . with Kristen Agar

To be honest I am disgusted by the topics the media chooses to highlight. I am going to let you in on a very important secret, but please don’t tell anyone. Are you ready? Here it goes. There are more important things in the world than Kim Kardashian’s butt. Gasp. I said it. It’s crazy, I know.

I have not always felt this way. Before I came to college, I never read the newspaper, and I would occasionally sit down and watch the news with my parents. However, when a previous Monitor article encouraged me to utilize Jewellverse and download some news apps on to my iPad, I did. As I began to read the news daily and receive notifications for breaking news stories, I became more opinionated as the discrepancy between my view on breaking news and the sources’ views increased. Let me put this into perspective for you: Nov. 20, 2014 was probably just an average day for you. Apparently, it was an average day for BBC too. Why? Well, if you ask BBC News, this date matters because it was the day that Kim K cancelled her trip to India. Meanwhile in a full Florida State University library, a man opened gunfire and shot three students, leaving one paralyzed. But they only cared about Kim. As Kim’s sister Kourtney would say, literally Kim, you’re being so rude right now.

When did a person who became famous for filming a sex tape overshadow the safety and well being of humanity? Why do magazines have issues dedicated to Hollywood’s 100 Hottest Men/Women or focus on who got married or divorced? I honestly couldn’t care less, and I don’t think that other people should care either. We should not consider these newsworthy. What we should consider newsworthy is the current conflicts with ISIS or the murder of an American war hero.

I understand that magazines are specifically made for these purposes and that other options for news sources exist. However, these alternative resources are very rarely found in easily accessible areas. For example, I don’t see any in the check-out line at the grocery store. Entertainment magazines are strategically placed in this location so that people will see them and buy them. To me, this seems as if this pop culture news is viewed as more valuable to customers than actual world issues. If different magazines were placed there instead, such as the TIME issue that highlighted Ebola Fighters as the 2014 person of the year or Newsweek’s magazine that addresses the issue of sex trafficking in America, then the public would become more informed. In my opinion, by simply seeing and reading the headlines and covers of more important topics than Kim Jong-Un’s new haircut, public opinion on media could change for the better. We only know what we are shown. If we only see headlines about celebrities’ personal lives, then we cannot be expected to know about other worldly issues.

It’s not necessarily the fact that the media focuses on celebrities that bothers me. It’s how they focus on them. If a news source wants to discuss how so-and-so is creating a fund to help provide food to the poor or send shoes to kids in Africa, then by all means let them report on it. But when was the last time that actually happened?

I do not expect the media to change. In fact, I can actually foresee the problem getting worse as social media becomes a more frequented source of information for people. However, good news is actually out there; it just may not be as easy to find as what is on display right next to the gum when you are buying Ramen at Wal-Mart. Important news is all around; you just have to look past the big butts and bad hair to find it.


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