“Those who serve or those who service us with entertainment?”
Recently, former NFL quarterback and social activist Colin Kaepernick was given the front cover of GQ magazine. He was recognized for his efforts in combating what he deemed to be prejudice against the African American population from members of law enforcement. And next, there was an onslaught of controversy since he decided to take a knee during the national anthem in football. Now people are criticizing the magazine stating that they should have put a real hero on the front cover. A hero, like one of the men or women that serve in our United States Armed Forces. There are a few reasons as to why they won’t and people in society play a hand in why this doesn’t happen as well. Because I’m sure that athletes and entertainers would have no issue with members of the United States military on front covers of popular magazines.
Here is the first issue I have with people stating that there should be a member of the U.S. military on the cover. For starters, athletes never said they were the heroes of America. Since they’re on television and get paid a lot of money, we as a society automatically make them heroes. We tell our children to be like them, but they never held this mass press conference and told young people to be them. Yes, they are in a more privileged position than most, but we put the pressure there in their lives. Why are they heroes, the United States military are the true heroes. But you don’t buy magazines to see military personnel on the front cover. You don’t watch sports and entertainment to see everything surrounding the military. And that’s what leads me into my next argument for why the troops are considered less heroes than athletes.
See, it’s easier to tell a kid to follow the athlete. Go to college, get out, have a career, and make good money. Joining the military comes with a risk, and that’s the risk of battle. Parents want their kids to go to college not to war. So if military personnel started popping up on magazines and in television shows, these same flag and military loving people would turn. Because it would appear as if pop culture is now geared toward making the cool and in thing to join the military. And parents would take issue with advertisers and marketers appealing to the senses of kids to fight in battle. Just think of it, McDonald’s, Nike, PEPSI, and entertainment with soldiers. Kids will think the cool thing is to join the military. Because that’s why children love athletes; what they do is considered fun, in style, cool, interesting, and great entertainment.
Even the military commercials they do have, people take issue with because it’s made to look entertaining for recruiting. Whether it’s soldiers running through the desert wheeling a rifle or an older commercial that used to come on where the kid was dropping his school books to join the Marines. In the end, this promoting is actually a good idea because you would see who truly cares about the military and who don’t care. It’s easy to wave a flag, but it’s a lot harder to sacrifice your child under the assumption that it’s for the good of the country. Because true heroics is about ultimate sacrifice such as the military; so if athletes are above soldiers in this country, ask yourself that question?
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