Nina Chanpreet Kaur provides an in depth contextual critique of the Kony 2012-like “Be Proud” media campaign, launched recently at the Sikh International Film Festival in New York by entrepreneur millionaire Gurbaksh Chahal in response to the mass murder of Sikhs in Oak Creek, Wisconsin:
Truly empowering people and eliminating hate comes with massive, localized, collaborative efforts aligned with existing national efforts that are measurable, focused on skill and community building, and impact the day to day lives of communities. Starting a massive media campaign to raise awareness about an issue is a fine beginning. What about curriculum, training and community events to follow? What about tracking the effectiveness of those efforts? In fact, instead of media appearances and tautological messages let’s attack the roots of xenophobia, hate, racism and the media that breeds it.
The piece expresses much needed concerns that have not been given adequate voice, particularly since such concerns are often shouted down in social media circles.
Certainly, a media campaign is needed. The questions raised about whether such a campaign should take place before a grassroots movement versus after one has started, or independently versus in collaboration with organizations already long-engaged in the work to address hate crimes, are very salient.
Read Nina Chanpreet Kaur’s comprehensive piece on the Langar Hall.