Social Justice Warriors Are Ruining Social Media

Social Justice Warriors Are Ruining Social Media

In an age where social media has the power to unite people, social justice warriors are dividing everyone.
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Co-Author: Christopher Brady

Social media has become a platform that nearly anything can be shared on. It has an undeniable influence that reaches audiences across the globe; however, whether social media has a positive or negative impact on our society is still up for debate.

Nobody can deny the power social media holds - especially over millennials. Recently, one of the biggest trends on social media has been the overwhelming presence of "social justice warriors", or SJWs. If you were to research what exactly a SJW is, there will be no clear definition, since it is technically a pejorative term. But just to give a brief description of how we believe SJWs to behave:

SJWs have always had a presence on social media, but it seems they have come to a higher prominence in the last year or so after the rise of Trump. SJWs tend to take things to a whole other level of "extreme."

They often blow things out of proportion that don't need to be. In particular, these SJWs focus on "racism" and "sexism;" often claiming things to be racist or sexist when in reality, they are neither of those. It's almost as though they wake up every morning with "ruin everyone's day" as the first thing on their agendas.

SJWs have also managed to have an impact in the world through their nonstop banter on social media. Recently, a new documentary aired on Netflix, entitled "What The Health." A few months prior to its release, the soap company Lush released an Instagram post promoting the film.

If you click this link, you'll see Lush's original post before they were forced to issue an apology to the public. As seen in the original post, Lush simply cited statistics relevant to the documentary it was promoting. SJWs took it upon themselves to twist what was posted by Lush, harming the company's reputation in the process.

The phrases "fat-shaming" and "body positivity" were frequently used in the comments section of the original post. Those criticizing Lush seemed to have this idea that addressing obesity, and the health issues surrounding it, somehow insults those that are, in fact, overweight.

Addressing the issues of obesity and unhealthy lifestyles is not "fat-shaming," and it is certainly not malicious. Enlightening the masses on things that could potentially harm individuals is not "fat-shaming."

Let's take smoking for example. For years, people attacked smokers, but nobody was around to tell them to stop "smoke-shaming." And when establishments banned smoking within their walls, there were no groups breaking down doors to reverse this.

Smoking is slightly different due to the fact that is can impact others physically as well as the one smoking themselves. Nevertheless, both are unhealthy lifestyles; however, nobody is going to get mad if Lush posts an anti-cigarette advertisement on their Instagram page.

SJWs have a lot more on their itineraries than just obesity and fat-shaming. They are also very concerned with their own view of racism.

Just as a disclaimer, we strongly believe that racism exists and is not acceptable in any situation. However, SJWs sometimes do not understand the true definition of "racism," and often end up looking like fools.

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, racism is "a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race."

Recently, Twitter SJWs played their own game on the app where users re-casted their favorite movies with one rule: no straight, white men.

We have absolutely no issue with pushing diversity in the entertainment industry. We strongly believe that characters that are meant to be portrayed by certain races should be played by actors and actresses of those particular races. But creating a hashtag on Twitter, and creating a game that specifically excludes an entire race, is in and of itself racist.

There have even been instances in which SJWs seem to pull racism out of thin air.

Self-proclaimed SJW Sania Kay (@sania90) took to Twitter to tackle an issue that quite literally does not exist. In baseball, when a pitcher gets a strikeout, the crowd will often put the letter "K" on display to represent the strikeout.

On July 4th, 2017, Kay posted a photo speaking about how this system represents institutionalized racism. Kay was unaware of the fact that this form of representing strikeouts has been around for over a century; however, when other Twitter users explained to her that this was something commonly done in baseball games, she continued to label it as racist.

If you were to read through the thread of comments under Kay's original post, you will see that she argues that the system that has been in effect for years should be changed because it is "offensive." This is not something that is offensive in the slightest. This is a prime example of a SJW over-exaggerating about something that needs not be blown up.

One final exhibit of the behavior of SJWs is the SheaMoisture incident in which the company decided to perform a marketing strategy that was meant to broaden the SheaMoisture customer base.

The predominantly African American customer base became outraged when SheaMoisture released an advertisement with white women in it. They claimed the company was abandoning its original, loyal buyers, and even went as far as to create the hashtag "#AllHairMatters" to mock SheaMoisture.

SheaMoisture did absolutely nothing wrong with this advertisement. We live in a society where capitalism is present - this means companies will want to reach a larger audience so they can make more money. SheaMoisture was not trying to undermine or abandon its black customers. The company was simply trying to appeal to customers of other races as well.

To close things off, it seems impossible at this point to log in to social media anymore without witnessing some sort of argument that doesn't need to be occurring. Social justice is something that needs to be discussed in our country since social issues are certainly a pressing matter, but picking fights on microaggressions and faux racism will not help us achieve the goals we aim to achieve.

So, SJWs: please focus on real issues, and stop ruining social media.

Cover Image Credit: My SMN

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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This One’s For Africa

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Read through to the end for an amazing Toto reference.

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It's now been a week since I stepped foot on the African continent for the first time in my life. I first visited Johannesburg, where my dad and I spent a day on an 'apartheid tour.'

This tour consisted of visiting Shanty Town, one of the poorest communities in South Africa. The living conditions were indeed different. They had to steal electricity through homemade wires connected to the telephone poles. They had only a few porta potties for ten families to share. They had several spickets to obtain fresh water from. There was no heating in the houses, which were made from pieces of painted aluminum.

Such inconvenient circumstances have come from years of oppression towards black people in South Africa. It was incredibly sad to know that these problems still exist and that apartheid only ended so recently.

On the other hand, the people showed very little anger. Despite their living situations, the people of Shanty Town were so kind and welcoming. Everyone we passed smiled and waved, often even saying hello or asking about our wellbeing.

It brought some serious warmth to our hearts to see their sense of community. Everyone was in it together, and no man was left behind. They created jobs and opportunities for one another. They supported each other.

The next part of the day included a tour of Nelson Mandela's old house. We then made a trip to the Apartheid Museum.

Overall, Johannesburg did not disappoint. The city contains a rich history that human beings as a whole can learn a lot from. Johannesburg is a melting pot that still contains a multitude of issues concerning racism and oppression of certain cultures.

After two days in Johannesburg, my family made our way to Madikwe game reserve, where we stayed at Jaci's Lodge.

The safari experience was absolutely incredible. Quite cold (it's winter in Africa right now), but amazing enough to make up for the shivering. We saw all my favorite animals: giraffes galore, elephants, zebras, impalas, lions, hyenas, wildebeests, rhinos, you name it. While my favorite animal will always be the giraffe, I don't think any sighting could beat when two different herds of elephants passed through a watering hole to fuel up on a drink.

Finally on June 1st, I flew to George to start my program with Africa Media in Mossel Bay. On Sunday, we went on an 'elephant walk.'

The safari was certainly cool, but that makes the elephant walk ice cold. We got to walk alongside two male elephants - one was 25, the other 18. They were so cute!! We got to stroke their skin, trunk, and tusks. They had their own little personalities and were so excited to receive treats (fruits and vegetables) at the end of the journey.

My heart couldn't be more full. Africa, you have become my favorite continent. And it sure is going to take a lot to drag me away from you.

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