You hear people say the expression all the time "dont judge a book by its cover," yet we as humans fail to mold this into our day to day lives. We all watch television from time to time and even the news, but many people dont understand how a point of view can be created even in a simple news story about an Afghan American being strip searched in an airport ( I dont need to say anything else, you already know where that was heading). In America things have been simplified, we have cellphones, we have microwaves, we have remote controls. It feels like everything is being done for us now, yet we still dont have time to do anything. But are we getting to the point that we dont even have enough energy and time to form our own opinion anymore? Now you can see news stations doing it for you, making you a democrat or republican overnight (Im just gonna mention the green party here because they never get any love, dont worry I know you guys are out there).
A great example of this is the presidental election of 2008 when we elected Barack Obama as the first black president of the United States. Before I move any further, I just wanna say that whether he was Black, Hispanic, or Mexican I would've been proud. His being elected in my mind measures the strides that we as Americans over the generations have been making, where color doesn't matter as much anymore. Yes there were still some "messages for the deaf robots" but Ill save that for another time. Now back to the election, if you look at the money raised by each candidate you'll see a trend here. Ralph Nader came in third place with about 738,000 votes, he raised 4.5 million dollars, a good amount of money right? John McCain came in second with about 60 million votes, raising 347 million dollars, talk about some door to door action! And of course our president Obama came in first with 69.5 million votes raising 513 million dollars!!! Just another note for you When George Bush ran for president in 2004 he raised 367 million dollars to win compared to John Kerry's 326 million (got all this info from the federal elections commission). If you didn't know most of this money is spent on advertising, and commercials to reach out to us the voters. We've all seen the commercials where they try to talk up one candidate and bash another, its an old thing thats been happening for years. Now, how many Ralph Nader commercials did you see last election? In fact Ill go even further, do you know the candidate Ron Paul, member of the U.S. house of representatives from the Texas 14th district? Of course most of you don't, as even I didn't and I felt cheated not knowing some of these candidates and what they represent. But its nobody's fault but our own, as we as Americans fail to dig and research and know about the potential person who will run our country (when you put it that way it seems a little more important). Bottom line is that based off this trend the more money you get, the more commercials and face time you get, which means your more likely gonna win. If this was maybe 20-30 years ago before the internet age picked up I wouldn't have any problem with that. But with all the ways we have to research and find information ( I found that fundraising information for both those elections within seconds) theres absolutely no excuse for us to not know about all the candidates and ensure we pick the rightful winner. But our "perception" during the 2008 election was that Barack Obama was definitely the right candidate to turn these hard times around for America. And how couldn't you, his face was on the TV every hour on the hour telling you to vote for him and that change was coming. Nobody saw the one commercial in Texas that Ron Paul had talking about cutting the military and bringing our troops home.
Everyone that knows me well knows how I feel about BET (Black Entertainment Television) and what it does to the black image in America. If you don't here it is in a nutshell, I don't like BET, as a representative of what black people are (our only major representative outside of sports) the station doesn't do a good job of showing a lot of the great intellectual successful black people we have. All I see when I turn that channel on is asses shaking and money flying all over the place. They give you the "perception" that all black people care about is money and "getting ass." And you gotta see this the way I'm looking at it; imagine your a foreigner and you just came to America. Straight off the boat you've never met or seen a black person in your life, and you turn on BET. All you see is blacks smoking weed, shooting at each other(lyrically or literally) and occasionally selling drugs, with a dose of sex on the side (sometimes its all sex, wait until the midnight hour). Now your gonna assume (because its what we all would do) that MOST black people do all these things. Your gonna assume that most of your black friends can get you weed. Your gonna assume that most of your black friends are involved in some type of gang. Your gonna assume that most of your black friends can rap, or have been to jail. I'm not saying that BET is horrible, but what does BET stand for? Black ENTERTAINMENT TELEVISION, meaning that most blacks are entertained and can relate to this, so what do you think people are gonna think? I know most of you will say "who cares what people think, they can think what they want," well when your being disrespected because you look like that guy from BET who was getting high all the time and nobody takes you seriously then see how much you care. We as black people need to show off our intellectuals more, I'm tired of hearing about Lebron James or Jay Z more then Al Sharpton or Jessie James.
I'm not here trying to change your "perception" of the world or how you feel about anything, I'm just trying to make you think (some of you seem to have forgotten how to do that). If you gonna come on here and say something ignorant and that makes no sense then just don't say anything (you'll only be making BET officials look like geniuses). Just understand the power of Perception in todays world, don't be the idiot that believes anything you here.
Like Malcolm X said; "A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything"