Oprah… I Love You… But We Need To Talk…
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Oprah… I Love You… But We Need To Talk…

Leaders of Today Must Nurture This New Generation

Oprah… I Love You… But We Need To Talk…

Oprah Winfrey may have inspired millions in her rise to fame and fortune… but to say she has negotiating power in our country’s problems is an understatement that I can live with because she has not yet stepped out into her role as a leader.

After hearing the horrific events that took place for the fallen students and the survivors of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting, the question that lies is will there be a push to train teachers to use guns, or have better regulations of how guns are acquired and sold. Although there seems to be more focus being put on the children (only because of their ability to stir up awareness through marching and activism), many question the true agenda that celebrities play in this situation.

Oprah Winfrey announced that she will be giving $500,000 towards a “national march for our lives”, demonstrating the strength and perseverance of our nation and the children affected by this recent tragedy. In an interview with Van Jones on the “Van Jones Show” she stated that she responds to the idea of the march as a way of saying enough is enough, making the march itself a testament of the student’s stance to take a “risk… on a national level” and that she is in support of it.

This march, set to take place in Washington was planned by the survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School, many of which is still recovering from the traumatic moments that left them speechless during that fateful school shooting. My problem is not the students that planned this march, but the rest of the world whom take it on its face value and contribute nothing but monetary funds to fuel the movement.

Sadly, this includes Oprah Winfrey…

While I’m not saying that Oprah is a bad person, or that she doesn’t care about the students in Florida; I am bringing to light that way to many times we have seen instances that celebrities and other people in corporate power use their platform to bring awareness, but not contribute effectively to change. This is very evident to many natural disasters and catastrophic events, causing multiple homes and lives lost. Way too often we see celebrities and other famously known people broadcast on news stations and one hour specials talking about the courage and bravery of individuals. Way too often we see celebrities posted on newspapers, websites and social media because of the amount of money they’ve “donated to help fund a cause”. Rarely have we ever seen where the money ended up or what that specific money was used for.

For example: George Clooney helps out children in international countries on site, providing food services, helping fund medical care, and more. He can be seen delivering conferences when he feels that there needs to be a change, and he can also be seen using his platform to bring awareness. Not much could be said about other celebrities as there track record of what they have done to help a certain cause often stops at a “donation”.

Sure, it’s amazing to donate money; but if I was to give a million dollars to a social movement in Lebanon to help them fight against oppression and the right to have expansive rights, does that necessarily mean that it will help grow their strength in numbers? Not really. It would probably help their message reach more people, but what they really need is a driving force; a helping hand. And that’s exactly what the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglass needs. They don’t necessarily need money, but support.

Face it; Martin Luther King Jr. was not successful in his message and fight because he had overwhelming monetary support. He was successful because he had people by his side, equally passionate and willing to fight alongside him. The more the numbers grew in strength, the more powerful and meaningful the message.

Don’t get me wrong, Oprah is pretty much paying for the student’s trip to Washington and to the march, as well as other students from across the country that wouldn’t have the money to participate. In my eyes that’s something to be proud of, but it doesn’t stop there. We don’t need just a provider, but a leader as well to guide them into the right path of change. In this day and age, children are not educated on their power and their leverage as American citizens. We are blinded by the TV shows and the video games to take part in something that is meaningful. Because of that, we lack effective change when a conflict of interest is presented.

During the interview that Oprah participated in, she stated that "you can't just go out there and march… There has to be a very clear intention behind what you're doing and why you're doing it." But for this new generation, change runs high on emotion and uncertainty. Our intentions are clouded by our fears and our judgements are made because of our circumstances. We need a leader that will provide that backbone, that support beam, and that guidance to teach our youth that change is made when progression, security, and creativity is threatened. We need someone to stand by them, put on your finest clothes, and stand in the face of adversity with confidence and fearlessness. We need the physical and mental backing of legislators, mayors, and even the president; taking no position lightly and putting the world on notice.

To Oprah Winfrey and to the rest of the world… we are more than just currency…

We are one nation…

Under god…

That fights for liberty…

And justice for all…

I hope you agree with me.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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