By: Friendly Mark Andrino | Published: March 22, 2019 | Updated: Aug 23, 2019
It is a general consensus that our society lay adrift in a sea of killings, fake news, corruption, terrorism, poverty, hate crimes, prejudice and abuses.
Yes, it is true, we have come so far. We reached the peak of everything – technological advancement, economic boom, world power – you name it. But we still are not safe, we experience these day-to-day problems that one way or another impede the stream of our progress.
These issues are creating a gigantic tremor rocking the society today that if left unaddressed will certainly lead us to abysmal chaos.
It may be hard to accept even though we hold value for the importance of journalists and journalism in our lives. A lot of people working in this field were killed just because they share factual information to the general public. Just because they keep the society awake. Just because they fight against inequality and prejudice. Just because they strive for transparency. Just because they divulge the corruption happening within areas of the society. When will we learn from this lesson and stand up against such brutality? When will be the right time for us to use our capabilities and protect our human rights? When will be the time that we learn to use our first amendment rights, to stand up and say, “I have the right to express,” “I have the right to say what I want,” “I have the right to publish anything good for me and my countrymen?”
Will it be when everything is gone?
As a matter of first importance, fake news is infiltrating the society even in the mainstream media – poisoning and corrupting susceptible young minds, strangling and leading misguided users into the sty of ignorance. Politics, business, and even the entertainment industry were not some of the safest havens of information one can turn to. A lot of things were published digitally which are stained with errors and falsification, becoming bitter pills that entangle our society.
Moreover, a lot of issues were thrown in the field of journalism. A lot of people, particularly those holding a top position, blame journalists for polarizing the general public with their thoughts and opinions on certain matters, when in fact they are just merely using their freedom to express and the freedom of the press. Some were imprisoned. Some were killed by unknown perpetrators.
We all have our biases, but as much as possible journalists keep their personal business separated from their work. Sometimes they commit mistakes and fail to adhere to ethical standards, as all human beings do. Journalists as much as possible ensure credibility and truthfulness in their craft.
If no one’s working towards spreading the word to the public, who will? Who will help us inform ourselves with the latest happenings within the broad spectrum of society and around the world?
All these staggering challenges should not hinder us from fighting for what is just and right. It should not stop us from pursuing equality by exercising our freedoms.
Garbed with Godly courage and idealism, we should use our pen as a sword towards media literacy. We should shed light on other people by keeping them aware of what’s going around with accuracy and accountability.
We should incorporate ideas towards creating positive ripples of change by upholding vigilance and cognizance in society. We should not be blinded by the sty of inequalities happening around the world. We should work and act at the forefront as leaders. Journalism should not work as a scant deliverer of simple news, but as an eye-opener that shapes society’s values and perceptions.
Journalists have advanced into a functional community motivator, eye-opener, energizer and solicitor of a responsive, vigilant and awakened public. We are the mirrors of the society, depressors of bad motivators and effective encouragers of those who lost hope. We are weavers of dreams and hopes for the future. We inspire young minds towards creativity by becoming passionate about what they do and learn from societal issues as much as possible and respond to it.
The general public also has a shared responsibility in addressing these problems by keeping themselves aware, by knowing their rights and freedom, by fighting for them and by supporting movements that are beneficial to the entire community.
This may be a Herculean task, but if all the sectors of the community including women, young people and indigenous community will act together, we all can make a difference. We all can dream of a future where children can grow without fear, where hope thrives and progress is ensured, where stability and growth will prosper, where women should not worry about their rights, where everyone is safe and free.
We should not let our founding fathers’ efforts go into the dump. We should act now and keep our communities resilient, being society’s basic fiber. We should not wait for the time where we all will be taking a dose of our own medicine for doing nothing.