Are we not in the United States? At least it seems that way based on my geographic location. It is really hard to tell these past few days though, as the English Royal Wedding took center stage on America’s 24 hour cable news stations. What is going on with all the side show news? The Royal Wedding has even taken over the deficit debate, but every now and then we get glimpse of American political discourse.
Has the news been that bad lately? Do the deficit, wars and gas prices encourage the American public to seek fantasy and happiness elsewhere? Has drug and alcohol abuse gone up? What are we doing in America that makes our population pay more attention to the idiotic ramblings of birthers and the fairy tale wedding of the British Royals?
As for now, we count the guards and entertain bland discussions about tea and crumpits, forgetting that America broke away from what the colonists called the British tradition of taxation without representation (at least that is the excuse the colonies used to declare their independence). What baffles me as an African American is that no one seems to be turned off by the pomp and circumstance of a country built on the principles and practices of imperialism!
Race and class exploitation ruled the days when the sun did not set on the British Empire, if I recall my European Imperialism studies correctly. In line with such practices, Europe, England included, underdeveloped Africa while exploiting her natural as well as human resources all in the name of the crown, not even leaving the dregs in many cases. You hear nothing of how those precious stones were really acquired in the coverage put upon us!
It is time for truth teaching. Celebrate the marriage of a nice couple, but know the history of the English Royal family and how they shaped our present.
Some of the morning shows have even relocated to broadcast from the streets of London, while others sent reporters overseas to deliver first person accounts of the Royal wedding (I guess budgets aren’t that tight after all). And there they are, telling America how great it is for Kate and William, or should I say, Prince William, the future King, and Kate, his new wife, to be at the center of this ostentatious affair. Do not get me wrong, I hope that the young couple will have a great marriage and a full life.
However, I am not curious about the inner workings of Buckingham Palace. I care more about what’s going on in this country. One news station even offered a Smartphone app free for downloads about the Royals. Why did they not do this when the Unions in Wisconsin were fighting tyranny? What about the alarming number of African American children ushered in to special education classes? Why not spend that time looking at how we have turned our prison system into a profit making industry where numbers matter?
The American media industry is severely challenged when it comes to social consciousness and responsibility. This latest obsession with the Royal wedding is just icing on the cake.