As anyone who reads my blogs will know, I generally only blog when I’m pissed off. There could be a few things right now that are pissing me me – no job, finding a new home, wanting a boyfriend (yada yada, that old chestnut) or even dare I say it the Brexit debate. Yes, all of that is being spoken about right now. But what about the stuff that isn’t being spoken about?
On 22rd March 2016, there were terrorist attacks in Brussels – in the airport, on the metro – 35 people died. A quick search on Google will show that it made front page headlines the following day. Saturation coverage. Outpouring of grief and empathy on social media. The innevitable changing of profile pictures in support. The “world” was united in grief.
Rewind to 13th March 2016, a terror attack in Ankara, Turkey. Buses carrying civilians were targeted – 37 people died. Remember? No, probably not. It barely made the TV news and the newspaper coverage was discernible by it’s absence.
Fast forward to 28th June 2016. It’s the evening rush at Istanbul Airport. Europes THIRD busiest airport (yes that’s right, busier than Gatwick (number 9), Frankfurt (number 4) or Schiphol (number 5). There is a bomb attack. At least 36 people are killed. Countless more injured. It appeared on the news overnight. But then, dawn breaks in the UK and look….. the story has vanished. Of the 10 national newspapers shown on BBC & Sky sites for their headline reviews, only one (The Mirror) has full page coverage, with another offering a small front page section. The rest don’t even give it a mention. See for yourself here:
This isn’t about giving terrorists the publicity. This is about standing united in the fight against terrorism, in the fight for humanity. A life in Belgium, France or the UK is worth no less or no more than a life in Turkey, Kenya or Pakistan – and yet, so many bombings, carried out by the same organisations, are ignored in the Western media. I don’t have the answer, but as a generation of social media users, we have the ability to be our own media. There was an outcry when the result of the recent referendum resulted in an increase in racist attacks in the UK. Isn’t this lack of recognition, this inaction by the media, racism by default?
We have the power to make the change.