A few weeks ago, a sixteen-year-old girl organised a peaceful climate change protest.
I was sent to interview her, and I had a plastic water bottle in my bag the whole time.
Despite the mild hypocrisy and trying not to question whether it made me a bad person, the interview went pretty well. I asked her what she thought about the lady that super-glued her tits to the road outside Goldman Sachs before she got arrested.
I also asked her what she thought about 25-year-old YouTube star and environmental activist, Jack Harries super-gluing his hands to the windows of the International Park Hotel in Central London. The incident led to him being detained by the police for 12 hours, but he was invited to speak about it on This Morning in early February this year.
Her response indicated a level of empathy and understanding towards the occasional need for extreme activism. She added that the escapades tend to make the headlines for all the wrong reasons and often moves so far away from the actual point.
On the bright side, the said extreme activist usually goes on to become a national maverick (reasoning often questionable) for about two weeks.
Until the next person decides to get their super glue and/or tits out.
Mainstream media tries to portray Climate Change protesters and Vegans as a group of pretentious super glue enthusiasts that think telling everyone they are vegan is a personality trait. But sometimes it feels like the media is exploiting this angle because everyone knows that a headline with the word ‘tit’ will accumulate an appropriate amount of traffic.
But what is actually making the headline? The issues regarding Climate Change? Or the [word] tit?
One of the main issues is that no one really cares about the less militant approach because it makes the whole situation harder to make fun of.
A good example of easy-going Veganism and Climate Change awareness is actually Aladdin (aka Mena Massoud.)
Proud Vegan Mena Massoud created ‘Evolving Vegan’ an organisation that consists of a lifestyle book, an IGTV travel series and an apparel line.
Mena has described Evolving Vegan as a project that creates a platform for chefs and entrepreneurs that want to make a difference in the world. He said “it’s not about labels or eating habits or any of that crap. It’s about evolving in the right direction so that we can help save your planet, our bodies and our fellow living souls.”
In an interview with here magazine he shared his concerns towards climate change and admitted that he prefers to stay away from militant veganism when he revealed he still wears leather on red carpets and puts honey in his tea. When asked about climate change, he said: “Global warming is at an all-time high, and climate change is raging, and I wanted to figure out how I could do my part to help slow that down and prolong the life of Earth I was like, so wait a second, you’re telling me if we took all the land [from dairy farms] to grow vegetables and fruits, we could end human starvation?“Yes. And we could end pollution? Yes. Like, it’s just insane.”
It’s obvious that we should be focusing on productive activism rather than extreme activism. But it could be argued that projects like Evolving Vegan struggle to get traffic beaucse the activism is productive, empathetic and effective. Or it could just be that the free the nip movement doesn’t really apply to Mr Massoud and therefore won’t make a effective headline.
It’s obvious that no one is going to click on an article with the headline; ‘Aladdin puts honey in his tea’ when another article called ‘Protester glues her breasts to ground outside Goldman Sachs’ is floating about.
Why do all the popular headlines about climate change have nothing to do with climate change?
Why is it always the people that don’t know how to recycle but follow the WWF Facebook page that will retweet it?
1) Luka Chuppi: Duniyaa. It’s an Indian song! My cousin was visiting this week and her two year old introduced me to this song. He mentioned that he wants to drink the wine they are drinking in the music video too. The baby is now officially my favourite family member.
2) Oscar winning score by A.R.Rahman. This, I am obsessed with this.