New piece up today at Role/Reboot on how to consume entertainment ethically, or how to decide it’s just too exhausting and go back to enjoying your Chris Brown club jamz.
This essay was inspired by a really great New York Mag piece by Will Leitch in which he wonders whether the we have reached or will reach a limit on our football consumption. As the game gets more dangerous and the dangers get more obvious, will we reach a point where we’re not willing to condone the industry’s malpractices even in exchange for really good television?
“But as the evidence mounts and the voices become louder, every NFL observer has to, at one point, ask himself: Is it immoral to be a football fan? Can an intelligent, engaged, socially conscious person put the way he sees the world in every other context aside because he enjoys watching the Giants on Sunday? Those are legitimate questions, because you can’t just pretend anymore. Every time there’s a big hit on the field, I can’t keep my human side—the part that wonders what that’ll mean for the player when he’s 45—quiet anymore. Forget your own kid playing football. The question is whether anyone’s kid should.”
The bottom line here is not that we should all stop dancing and bow our heads in protest when a Chris Brown song comes on, or that football fans should boycott the league until the suicides, concussions, and other traumas are reigned in. The bottom line is that it would serve us all well to think a little more carefully about where our entertainment comes from, what prices we’re willing to pay, and what cost is simply too high.
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