The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Cross Currents: Should celebrities use their platforms to speak out against injustice?

Alloy Zarate
Illustration by Alloy Zarate, 2020

In light of controversial injustices around the globe, The Channels asked two staff members their opinions on whether celebrities should use their platforms to speak out against injustice.

Sofia Stavins, News Editor

The pressure that is placed upon those who have platforms to speak up when certain issues take place can be unreasonable on occasion. 

While I do agree that they should use their media to educate their followers on relevant situations taking place, it should only be done within their comfort zones. I believe we, as a society, forget that celebrities, or those with large followings, are still human. 

They still breathe the same air as we do and eat and drink the same way we do. Why should we treat them differently than we would treat our neighbors? They could be doing things to help world issues, but one may think they aren’t because the celebrity is doing it in silence. 

The thought that a person has to post all of their thoughts on an issue is unreasonable and overwhelming. Each individual that is apart of our society can not rely their knowledge on issues based on what another person posts. Each of our education is left up to us to understand. Why would we expect another person to teach us something when we are more than capable of finding out the information ourselves? 

I do believe that those with large followings have more of an advantage than those who don’t, but we should never force one person to do something they are uncomfortable with because of our expectations of them. 

Izadora Hamm, Staff Writer

Having reign over public opinion is a privilege that few individuals have. People listen to those they admire in the depths of controversy, and celebrities have used their voices to amplify injustices for innumerable years. I believe they should take advantage of that aptitude. 

It’s easy to shed light on societal triumphs, but facing adversity in the public eye is a little more complex. Celebrities harbor platforms with a generous following, which is a privilege when attempting to influence an array of people, especially regarding conflict. 

Whether it be to spread awareness, show support, uplift victims, or even extend donations, a large following can be beneficial to any cause in need of representation. 

Many celebrities feel interconnected with their audience, displaying acts of appreciation and speaking of their gratitude for the extravagant life they’ve led. 

Authors, musicians, actors, activists, and countless other titles have reached a level of prominence that can be considered stardom. And with this immeasurable diversity from icons that touch their fanbase, advocating against corruption all over the world comes easy. 

This is so valuable to marginalized communities that may not have the voice they need to fight for the causes they believe in. Having a spokesperson with societal power can encourage disheartened victims to speak up when they previously felt looked over. 

Provided that celebrities exercise caution and are considerate of their credibility, using their platform to speak out against injustice can be a strong force for positive change. Publicly shedding light on important inequities is an impactful form of activism, and when done with consideration, it is a gift that I believe celebrities must utilize.

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