If you've been on Instagram or Twitter for the past few years, then you've definitely witnessed an array of celebrities and social media influenced being #Canceled. If you are unfamiliar with this term, being canceled is a way of your fans saying they will no longer support you. Ideally, this means being boycotted and shunned by social media but it usually doesn't work out like that. From Bill Cosby to Kanye West to Laura Lee, people have gotten canceled for reasons ranging from rape allegations to homophobic or racial slurs. However, they always seem to release an album or release a poorly executed apology video and they're back in everyone's good graces.
Now, I have a few problems with this canceled culture that has grown in popularity over the years. First of all, people are usually too quick to cast judgment. The thing with celebrities is that we only see what they want us to see, so we usually never know the whole story when it comes to their issues. The good thing about that is obviously that they can have their privacy but it also means that it's very easy to manipulate situations they're involved in. Am I saying that all celebrities are saints? Definitely not, but someone can post about what they supposedly did on Twitter and so many people will run with it without even verifying the information. How reliable is this information that you are using to jeopardize someone's entire career?
Secondly, people are way too quick to forgive celebrities. I remember when Kanye West was canceled for saying that slavery was a choice and not even a week later people were talking about how awesome his latest album was. If you didn't have a problem or see the fault in what he said, that's OK (well, not really, but that's a topic for another day). But for the people who are a part of the "Kanye is canceled" party who still went back to listen to his album, you've just sent a message to him that his actions are excusable as long as he can release some music afterward. That'll REALLY show him.
Finally and most importantly, the entire "movement" is very easily forgotten. Except in situations where the cases are actually taken to court like Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein's, canceled celebrities are usually fine in a few weeks. In cases of false accusations and misunderstandings this is good, but for other's — especially regarding sexual assault and harassment - it is a huge blow and disappointment to the victims and those affected by what happened. What's the point of making such a big deal about something such as forming hashtags and starting petitions when you're just going to eventually disregard what happened in a few weeks?
Canceled culture survives because of the hype surrounding situations; when it's no longer front-page news, what they did doesn't seem as bad.
Some people may think that this isn't all that important issue and, to some extent, I agree. But with the increasing influence that celebrities have on the younger generation, it is becoming one. I think that holding these celebrities accountable for what they do and say is important but this trend is not the way to go about doing that.