Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Celebrity endorsements or Mockery of Human Intellect?

I admire Aamir Khan for his acting but I wonder at this concept of celebrity endorsements. In fact I really find it asinine to say the least that something like Earth Hour needs his image.

Global warming is a major area of concern with loads of data on it available over the internet. It is a problem which has attracted the brightest brains in the world. I wonder as to why is it that despite all the efforts put in by researchers, activists, NGOs and even governments of the world we still need an image of the above nature with one of the popular actors carrying a candle to signify shutting off power for an hour and that his support to the cause gives it an extra ounce of seriousness.

How does this problem gain in significance on account of this image???

Does that imply that unless such people who are not anywhere related to the cause come and just stand infront of the camera for a shot, our educated mass will not get convinced. Doesn't that somewhere imply that the underlying assumption here is that educated mass has actually lost all its grey cells? The same is the case when we see Amitabh Bachhan offering polio vaccination drops.

Media guys may argue about the importance of perception but again what does it mean in terms of something which is so real and talked about. Why on earth do we still need IMAGES to inspire us? Can't we take the effort and do something about things which are real just because we understand and believe in the cause and feel strongly about it???

I recollect a group of students from an undergraduate college approaching me for the walk they were trying to do on 1st Dec'08 towards AIDS day. They mentioned about their difficulty in getting a celebrity as otherwise it was difficult to convince the media. How very insane!! Is AIDS such a small issue that it needs to be backed by someone from the film/tv fraternity to come and endorse? Can't the students have faith in their own selves and march because they themselves feel that the cause is worth their sweat and time?

The same public mindset is well taken advantage of when we see actors who have had their popularity time on the screen switch to the political circles. The idiotic junta would flock them from all corners to get a glimpse when Sanjay Dutt stands for Samajwadi Party or when Chiranjeevi launches Praja Rajyam.

I am afraid that unless we ignite the candle of passion and knowledge in our own hearts, we will continue to depend upon the candles held by images which probably may have altogether different 'causes' that they hold dear than what they are trying to represent there.

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