Thirteen Reasons Why – Proof of Positive Celebrity x sociopolitical interaction

When it was announced that Selena Gomez had been an executive producer on a Netflix version of Jay Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why I think the world around people were admittedly wary. With such touchy subject matter how would they turn the revered novel into something visual? And then it came out – and we were in awe. It became the Netflix’s most popular show, racking up 3.5 million social volume impressions in the first week following its release. Here’s why that’s important: it’s proof positive that if celebrities are provided with the information to disseminate to their fans we will be establishing an entire generation of socially, politically engaged individuals with actual fact behind their engagement. The fact that the show features powerful messages about mental health and other issues that teens face today means that hopefully, people will be encouraged to talk about their own experiences after talking about the show; and that the stars and in Selena’s case producers, are accessible because of social media makes it that much more powerful – its tangible because of this.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – social media is not the root of all evil; celebrities having an opinion on social issues and politics and expressing them is not cause for telling anyone to shut up and sing – both of these things come together to create a dialogue from which we have a lot to learn. I give Selena mad props for putting herself out there for a project as important as this one. As we learn in Thirteen Reasons Why – everything affects everything.

Refugee Choir Brings People Together

“Imagine as you read this story, the sound of a choir in the distance learning “What a Wonderful World.” Music is truly a universal language.  No matter our differences in religion, politics, or ethnicity, it brings people together”

A choir of refugee’s from across the planet come together to sing in Tacoma, Washington. Though they don’t speak the same language they come together for the universally binding – music. Follow the link below for the full story:

http://www.king5.com/news/local/tacoma/tacoma-refugee-choir-forges-new-friendships/408719535

A Case Study on Censorship – Not Ready to Make Nice (Song of the Week)

Does censorship still exist? You’d say no, right? But let’s look at the Dixie Chicks, and  then I’ll ask you again.

On March 10, 2003, the Dixie Chicks were on the opening date of their ‘Top of the World’ tour in London, England, just days before the initial invasion of Iraq when lead singer Natalie Maines told the crowd, “Just so you know, we’re ashamedthe president of the United States is from Texas” about President Bush. The trio finished their tour but were essentially banished from mainstream country music in the United States and virtually censored for three full years as they faced public and media scrutiny following the incident, including threats of physical harm and death wishes

In 2006 they release ‘Taking the Long Road’ which included ‘Not Ready to Make Nice’with lyrics such as “how in the world could the words that I said send somebody so over the edge that they’d right me a letter saying I better shut up and sing or my life will be over?”

The Dixie Chicks were effectively censored in 2003, a censorship which stood in the United States until 2016 when they announced a State Fair circuit, but will likely never release or perform in the States in the same capacity as before their comments on Bush.

So I ask again, does censorship still exist? And what are you willing to do if it does?