Posted by: jessica | November 14, 2011

What Motivates Us to Act?

Sure, we may not always thrive and in fact, we might suffer for our decisions, but maybe we are just too busy to act until it becomes a real threat to our safety or our comfort. Try to deprive an American of something they feel they rightfully deserve and then they will be motivated to act and to change.  Unfortunately, the media crisis is slowly robbing Americans through the backdoor and they are too busy to notice the missing items.

Once I went to see The Vagina Monologues at PCC.  In an effort to motivate the audience to act on behalf of women’s rights movements in Africa, they tagged on an extra hour of monologues devoted to women’s suffering in Africa.  Tales of rape, mutilation and murder over and over again sent me into a hopeless state of mind.  I was more motivated to have a beer and drown the Weltschmerz than I was to donate time or money to African women.

Personally, I do see the media crisis as an important debate to have.  It keeps us aware of how things are changing and forces us to think about where we are headed.  But, in motivating an audience to action we must not cross that threshold where sensitivity to the cause is lost, hope disappears and apathy sets in.  Frankly, McChesney has done that for me.  I could have used some solution-making about 10 chapters ago.

As long as the Internet remains a forum for free speech and free press and as long as there is universal access to the Internet, is this debate necessary?

Or as TV becomes an outdated medium, will the conglomerates find a way to capitalize and monopolize the Internet, keeping the debate relevant?


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