Hello again 🙂 Today there’s a bit of a celebration going on online for the First Amendment. This is one of the most important amendments to me because it gives us the right to question things we don’t agree with. The chance to try and change things or make a statement about how we feel about issues through art. It allows the press to work to expose problems that we all need to be aware of.
I am firmly in the anti-censorship camp. I really feel as though we are sometimes too fast to try and hide what might make us a bit too uncomfortable. Art can be cathartic and actually help us work through things and that’s why I wasn’t too happy about what happened with the Buffy episodes “Earshot” and “Graduation Day”. For those who don’t know about Earshot, here is a video talking about the episode and the controversy that surrounded it:
“Graduation Day” also faced some controversy, with the second half not being played for awhile because of the violence that erupts at the ceremony. I appreciate his perspective on “Earshot” and can kind of understand it. I do, however, think that there is another perspective to think about.
Art has the power to make a statement about the world when the creator of it chooses to. With “Earshot”, Joss was making a great statement in Buffy’s rant to Jonathan that maybe people really needed to hear then:
Buffy: You know what? I was wrong. You are an idiot. My life happens to on occassion suck beyond the telling of it. Sometimes more than I can handle. And it’s not just mine. Every single person down there is ignoring your pain because they’re too busy with their own. The beautiful ones. The popular ones. The guys that pick on you. Everyone. If you could hear what they were feeling. The loneliness. The confusion. It looks quiet down here. It’s not. It’s deafening.
That is probably one of the best bits from that show for it’s honesty and it’s bluntness. It tells us to look deeper and take other people’s feelings into consideration. It asks us to take a step back and see that things aren’t as bad as we build them up to be sometimes. And even if it is bad… there’s always someone worse off than you. When you take that perspective things aren’t so terrible. In this episode, Buffy was forced to hear what other people were thinking and really understand where her classmates were coming from.
As far as “Graduation Day Part 2”- Again, this is a time to look a little deeper into the message of the show. Yes, there was violence happening, but something great was happening too. Kids who had probably barely spoken to each other most of their school careers were actually coming together and working under one of their own to save themselves and their town. They were united and they came out the winner in the end. Not a bad thing to try and get across…
So what do you all think of all the media controversies like this that have happened? Are you celebrating your freedom of speech today? Comment back and let’s talk about it! See you all next time 🙂