The media sources we tend to pay attention to such as the news, newspaper or social media all have a great way of misleading one and not giving one the proper information they need to know or fully give everything one needs to see. It almost seems like the media is trying to blind fold us to “protect” us from the real world while telling us that everything is okay. The media plays a vast role in why people don’t get the raw truth in what they see and it is affecting people in a bigger way then one thinks.
Being censored from seeing certain things such as death, war and other explicit images makes us soft and we seem to lose the ability to be empathic because of it. In Tori Rose DeGhett’s “The War Photo No One Would Publish”, a photographer by the name of Kenneth Jarecke took a bunch of disturbing and grievous images one with a weak stomach or a serious issue with sensitivity would not want to see.
The pictures included men lying on the ground dead, prisoners being held captive at gun point and the one image that no one would publish, a man who was burned alive while attempting to get out his vehicle. This image is extremely graphic and shows every single detail of the man being burned. His hands are shown clinched and his entire body is completely black and covered in ash. Throughout the article, DeGhett is arguing how the media shows what they want to show and what they don’t want to show.
Her argument in the article is that war photos that are censored doesn’t allow people, mainly Americans during that time to feel empathy for the Iraqi people or give them an opportunity to change the result of war because the photo wouldn’t be posted.
The war photo that no one would publish exposes us to the reality of what happens during war. This photo gives us an actual insight of what those at war have to deal with and what the media refuses to show us. The media censors and shields us from seeing what goes on behind the curtains and only allows us to see the bright side of everything. What we see on the news or movies about war is only the good that comes along with it, war seems clean and easy from how the media portrays it. We see soldiers coming home and being reunited with their families and the over the phone conversations between a soldier and their loved ones but we never see what those men and women actually go through on an everyday basis.
The media doesn’t display what happens to them while they’re at war such as being bombed or being shot at. We don’t see the helicopters being shot down and the ones fighting for their lives by doing so we lack education and awareness of everything that goes on. Media attempts to portray what goes on through video games and movies but what they are willing to show only shields us from seeing the truth. For example, video games such as Call of Duty the way war is portrayed is a misconception, even though it may be a video game some may feel everything seen on the game is real because that’s how it is made to seem. These type of games try their best to show a realistic war situation but at the end of the day it is just a video game. The media isn’t doing us any good by protecting us from the truth because at the end of the day we aren’t getting the full story of what goes on and we aren’t being exposed to the truth we need to be shown.
The Media should allow all people, especially Americans see the gruesome and disturbing images of war because we seem to take advantage of those at war and we don’t seem to appreciate them as much as we should. It is extremely important that we see the truth because we will never have a clear understanding of what goes on and DeGhett even says that in the article. “But never showing these images in the first place guarantees that such an understanding will never develop (DeGhett)”. This quote backs up the argument that without visual of what happens we don’t fully grasp what goes on. When it comes to war the media is also very one sided, we see what others do to us but they never show what us as Americans do to other people and their countries. We should get the full truth of what happens it is unfair we only see everything from one perspective.
The media has a way of making Americans seem as if we are the good guys as if we are heroes but in reality we aren’t any better than anyone else. If anything we may be worse than the ones we are at war with. We are able to drop bombs on others and raid the countries of others but we never see any of the damage that we do and Jarecke says this under a photo of his. “If we’re big enough to fight a war, we should be big enough to look at it (Jarecke)”. In this quote Jarecke is saying Americans can be the perpetrator of a war but we aren’t able to look at the damage that we do during the war. It is time that we face the truth of what we do to others and the media should allow it. Censorship of these type of things doesn’t benefit us in anyway, it actually hurts us because we don’t have the courage to look in the mirror and realize that we may be the issue.
It is time we hold ourselves accountable for our actions and seeing the images that we need to see may be the step we need to do that. Maybe by seeing images of us Americans killing children and women and bombing buildings in other countries may make us have a sense of empathy and humanity for the ones we put through hell and back. In conclusion, being kept away from seeing what we truly need to see doesn’t benefit us in any way. Not only the photo of the man being burnt alive but also all war photos from here on out should indeed be posted for our benefit.
By doing so it will give us a sense of reality by making us realize and truly grasp the things that goes on that we don’t see. Even though we may never get the true experience of war seeing disturbing and not safe for work images will in a way give us a sense of the type of things that we are banned from seeing. Given the chance to see the gruesome photos of way may be what we need in order to end war completely. Seeing these images may actually make us comprehend that we are killing and torturing human beings and many of them being innocent people. It is time Americans get a reality check and take a step back from the things we do to those in other countries. Maybe it is time that we end war and have some type of sentiment and empathy not only for others but also for our own that we send over to put their lives on the line every day.