Breaking the Mold: A Cure to History’s Repetition
Songs of sex and drugs play louder than the cries of 12-year-old Tamir Rice moments before he was shot. Photos of Kim Kardashian reach more than the wounds of Akai Gurley—a victim of police brutality. Donald Trump’s Tweets gain more attention than the damages done by terrorist attacks on entire towns.
Media coverage and user reactions have succumbed to a formulaic template. The destruction of cities, the cries of children and the death of hundreds are inputted into an equation accompanied by exponents of news gathering, speculation and biographies which are then “solved” for through condolences in the form of shares, likes and hashtags. The day humanity cares more for the tears and wounds of others than the likes and shares of posts, accounts for the day sensationalism and emotion replaces numbness and routine of tragedies.
The world vows “never again” as social media applications are flooded with posts about the most recent breaking news event. And yet it seems as though this cycle repeats—one occurrence after the other.
How has humanity strayed so far from the lessons held behind the glass enclosures of Holocaust museums that we are blind to the current happenings in Syria today? When the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported that over 500 children were killed by February 2012 as a result of the Syrian Civil War limited coverage was provided. When four Americans were killed in Syria, within hours most news sites and applications were flooded with information. This is not to say in anyway that the life of one person is more worthy than the life of another, but it aids in exemplifying the imbalance of concentration and priorities of our news consumption.
Why have we allowed naivety to overpower the consequences of war when it is happening in our very generation? With the unfortunate increase in mass atrocities, our history continues to be rewritten today with the same mistakes that have been made yesterday. Similarly to the ways in which some ignore the teachings of our past no matter how many times outlined in history books, it isn’t the posts that obtain the most likes or comments that will assist in the rebuilding of our world, rather it is the care and direct action taken that will.
Humans, however, fail to operate in the same manner. We are not a formula equipped to fit the molds in which our ancestors have created. While our history has a nasty tendency to repeat itself, we must break the trend and refuse to tread alongside. So maybe our strength in defiance is mistook for a numbness to hardship; afterall, the more one is exposed to something, the thicker the skin and the stronger the heart become.