(By Guest Writer: Nelago Johannes)
I could easily tell you what I thought the function of the media in society is. Maybe you would even like me to enhance your IQ through why or why not public figures have the right to privacy.
Or are you the type of person that thinks about the freedom of expression in Namibia when you hear the word ‘MEDIA’.
The truth of the matter is that venturing on a journey to the future without a roadmap of knowledge of the past is an uncertified road to an undiscoverable destination.
Knowledge of the past is what has shaped today’s journalists.
Our heritage has carved what the function of the media should be in modern civilization. Yes, it is ancient times that has moulded the indoctrinisers that cultivated the now harvested habits of basing propaganda that public figures don’t have a right to privacy.
It is possible to talk about freedom of expression in Namibia but then I’d be limiting the nation to see beyond the horizon. So, NO, it is very wrong.
It is wrong in the sense that it is the same limitation that led to the Nazi’s believing that Germany belonged to the blue-eyed blonde. Or should I speak about the same limitation that blinded the world and deprived the universe of seeing its first female president in the 17thcentury? You tell me, was it right for the media to use propaganda in the Cold War? I refuse to constraint this piece to the limitations of only defining Namibia in the globe filled with hundreds of countries.
This is because I have seen what limitations can do to a nation. Limitations from their colonial rules are the reason why Angola, Namibia, South Africa and many more African countries are still called “Developing countries” and not “Developed countries.”
Women in the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries were challenged with expressing themselves in a patriarchal system that generally refused to grant merit to women’s views.
Cultural and political events during these centuries increased attention to women’s issues such as education reform, and by the end of the eighteenth century, women were increasingly able to speak out against injustices. The difference between THEN and NOW is the way in which women were portrayed by the media.
He had a dream that we could become a team. This man spoke out when everyone broke out.
Truth of the matter is that Martin Luther King Junior saw something that many failed to see back then, HE REALISED THE POWER OF THE MEDIA.
The immense difference a sentence in “The Namibian” newspaper would have on the town, nation, sometimes even the globe. It would grab the attention of that which had been unattended to. It would bring life to the stories untold because it would educate, empower and enable minds to see beyond the horizon.
Over the years, the media has played a refined role in how we think, act or perceive things. “Be submissive, quiet, pretty and obedient.” If you are a female, that was expected of you 2 centuries ago. “Big men don’t cry. Toughen up. A girl can’t beat you and go hunting for the biggest animal in the forest.” Surely if you are a male, you now have a pretty good idea of what was expected of you. That was you because the media made you believe that is WHO YOU ARE!
This is an opinion of 1 person, reviewed by 2 people and edited by 3. More than a billion minus 1 minus 2 and minus 3 unheard voices and the media has so much power? It shouldn’t, you have the power to refuse to succumb to the voice that does not best suit you.
Lucky for you, the era you live in today does not only enable you to embrace your differences, it gives you the platform aswell as a variety of ways in which you can best describe yourself. Be the best sportswoman you can be.
Young missy, its okay to take up that job as a mechanical (Just read the manual to a good mechanic). Young sir, is it a ballet dancer you aspire to be? Nothing is stopping you but you.
So go with what makes you happy and don’t be limited to what the media says.
It’s a painful reality to watch 13 year old’s going through depression because they seek validation from a world that has never even known they exist. Social Media, print media, television, movies, video games, music, cell phones, various kinds of software and internet are a base that can destroy or grow, help me, help you see the good in our generation.
My Name is Nelago Johannes, I’m 19 and this is my voice!