The MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) went just as expected. There was simulated sex with a back-up dancer, a wardrobe malfunction, and an F-bomb heavy ode to the powers of a big booty. (Congratulations, Nicki Minaj. Stay classy.)
Social media and news outlets have already begun the over-saturation process by showing and analyzing the event’s performances. I’ve seen Minaj’s twerking butt on three news shows this morning, and sadly, what has been seen cannot be unseen.
Just as in years past, the fires of outrage and disgust are reigniting on all fronts. Half are abhorred by what is being peddled as entertainment, and the other half is sick and tired of archaic beliefs that stifle sexuality. (See my post on the 2013 VMAs.)
Surprisingly, I’m not outraged or disgusted by last night’s spectacle. I’m sad and a little nauseous, but my outrage and disgust are reserved for topics that will get short shrift while we all debate entertainment’s debauchery and the feminism of Minaj, Beyonce and Miley Cyrus.
While we’re bickering, the following evils will not get media attention or societal outrage:
Earlier this year, media called ISIS fighters “rebels” when they were battling against Syrian military forces; however, the group has become much more sinister as they’ve successfully moved through Syria and Iraq. The UN estimates that more than 40,000 people have been killed by ISIS, and their cruelty and barbarism are unmatched, especially on Christian targets. Closer to home, ISIS has repeatedly made threats against the United States and while we were gearing up for the VMAs, the group beheaded American journalist James Foley. The U.S. response to Foley’s murder and ISIS’s threats did not reflect the outrage they deserved.
“The United States of America will continue to do what we must do to protect our people. We will be vigilant and we will be relentless,” said President Obama in a statement. “When people harm Americans anywhere, we do what’s necessary to see that justice is done.”
And then he went golfing. And 19.6 million people went to check out Minaj’s new video on Vevo.
No one really grasped the magnitude of the border crisis until news broke earlier this summer about thousands of Central American children illegally entering the U.S. through the Mexican border. Authorities say more than 63,000 children have been detained since October 2013, and federal and state officials have been forced to set up more than 100 facilities to care for these them until immigration hearings can be held.
While the plight of unaccompanied children stirs our hearts, the surge and continuing influx has revealed many concerns such as immigrant deaths caused by heat stroke or drowning; sexual assault of immigrant women and girls; crossings by gang members, drug cartels and possible terrorists; and increased demands on an already-struggling social service system.
So where’s the outrage? Both immigrant and American safety are at huge risk, but nothing has been done. Unfortunately, we hear very little about border security these days, but we did get to hear a good bit about security and VMA attendees. Apparently, it wasn’t very good because rap mogul Suge Knight was shot hours before the event at a party thrown by singer Chris Brown.
Earlier this summer, the world joined together to protest this militant Islamic group that kidnapped more than 200 Nigerian school girls. Sadly, mass tweetings of #BringBackOur Girls didn’t lead to the release or rescue of these young women, and Boko Haram continues its terrorism through assassinations, bombings and other atrocities. The group took over the Nigerian town of Gwoza and set up a caliphate yesterday. Unfortunately, that tiny development was eclipsed by breaking news about Iggy Azalea’s fall during VMA rehearsals.