It’s been forty-four years since the legendary musician Marvin Gaye released his vulnerably analytical track, What’s Going On, that spoke on the weary and tattered social climate of America as the country was transitioning from the civil rights movement. Now, more than ever, I believe that Mr. Gaye’s harmonic open letter still maintains relevance in our present times. News coverage and social media are all constantly drilling us with intense civil unrest across the United States. There are an array of growing issues ranging from low water supply on the West Coast, heightened video radar of the senseless murders of African-Americans due to police brutality, social protests from the public, American influence on social conflict in other nations such as the Middle East and Russia, and the 1st GOP debate resembling an elementary school yard episode of the dirty dozens. The over-exposure of the harsh realities of society is causing the pulse of America to beat on a low dial towards the future.
This unveiling truth is putting Americans on edge. Especially for people of color, this heightened awareness is causing us to feel that we’re in the middle of genocide and terrorism. The unbalanced and racial tactics by law enforcement and the judicial system have been normalized staples of American culture, but social media and camera phones cast an immediate spotlight on its remaining prevalent presence. As a black woman, my perspective is shaping towards fear, doubt, and weariness. No one wants to view these entities as enemies, but the tactics and laws of the system have proven otherwise. I pray that there will come a day where the powers to be will have to take responsibility and create change for the historical and systematic mistreatment of people of color in America. And as a growing media outlet, Detoxaholic will continue to do its best in casting a light on this journey of change.
Although I feel a social responsibility with my platform, however, the weight can be overwhelming at times. It’s not healthy for my sanity to become too mentally and emotionally consumed with all the wrong-doings of the world, and I give much respect and honor to the people and social advocates that exercise their daily efforts towards social and political uplift. I’m personally grateful for the sheer entertainment pleasures of ratchet reality TV shows, and the Drake vs. Meek Mill rap beef. Just how theatrical musicals supplied as entertainment relief for Americans during the Depression, these current media vices are fulfilling the same void and are necessary in balancing our coping mechanisms.
Overall, society is blatantly blind to the next phase of our existence. The pot is boiling over and we don’t know if we’re on the brink of actual change or another civil war. It’s awesome that we live in a society where a Black man can achieve and sustain two presidential terms, and the legalization of gay marriage is now a national staple. Even with these monumental achievements in American history, there is still more to overcome. We’re all searching for a sign or savior for change, but we’re all the answer. We all must gain and exercise the courage to use our platforms to guide our country towards a true operation of democratic structure. I don’t know if it’ll get worse before it’ll get better, but I pledge to do my best to be apart of this inevitable culture shift.