Typically, I’m not easily shaken, but today didn’t seem to be the case. This morning as I was scrolling down my Facebook timeline, I came across a shared video that really disturbed me and for a second had ruined my mood until I sat and reflected a while. Then I thought to myself, “is this what it’s really come to though?”
The video has captured the last moments of some young Black man’s life; a man who appeared to be dying by the hands of another individual. Now, one could probably speculate any number of reasons why I was so off set by the video: Another “Brother” whose life ended too soon, or the phenomenon of gun violence in general? Maybe, the fact that someone was insensitive and audacious enough to pull out their phone and record the event? Almost, but not quite…what was most unsettling about this clip was the realization that the video will be shared and re-shared by hundreds, maybe thousands, of more insensitive and audacious bafoons (Just as shots of Mike Brown’s lifeless body lay in a pool of blood on a street in Ferguson, Missouri). I am more so discouraged because it appears this desensitized mindset is becoming indoctrinated into our youth, yes OUR youth. Not only are we thinking it’s acceptable to pull out our devices and record instead of rendering aid of some sort; but many think it’s cool to exacerbate this exploitation by sharing and even tagging friends in it.
Speaking from first hand accounts, witnessing someone die unnaturally and the act that caused it is as traumatizing as it gets. That trauma is amplified tenfold if you personally know the unfortunate soul. These experiences will be the last thing to vacate your memory. Furthermore, why would you want to expose someone else to the tragedy so distastefully? 8 years ago, I lost a close friend to a gunshot wound to the chest surrounded by a crowd of homeboys and random spectators alike. I remember becoming enraged at the fact that news cameras had arrived before any medical assistance; I could only imagine if that had taken place today with video production being so accessible. Stomped out iPhones and Droids would’ve have been the least of some of y’alls concern.
To take a step back and broaden the subject, we are in a mad dash to post and view the most ridiculous things in the history of “ever.” Facebook, Instagram/Vine, and King YouTube are supersaturated with videos of folks doing and capturing everything from fatal car accidents to crotch cruelty…not to mention all these idiotic “challenges” going on. All for what? A few shares or fifty more followers? Is that the running price for dignity these days? Not mine.
Now, please don’t misconstrue what I’m conveying. I’m a firm believer in all of our constitutional rights, including freedom of press. Post what makes your heart content. I just pose one question:
What is your purpose?
And to give in to the “challenge” trend, I challenge you to join my #NoSharedBS movement. In addition, only of you’re “real,” delete/UNfollow/UNfriend anybody who does share the aforementioned malarkey.