ENTERTAINMENT

We can find entertainment in so many places. A good laugh, cry, or lesson learned can create such a bittersweet atmosphere that is comforting and pushes limits. In some cases, topics are brought up, and stands are taken through entertainment to make a statement to a large audience. 

Declan McKenna has several songs tackling different issues close to his heart. These songs are Brazil, which is a song criticizing FIFA for awarding Brazil the 2014 FIFA World Cup amongst the country's ignorance of its own community, and British Bombs, a movement against the UK's actions in foreign policies, like the arms trade.

IN MUSIC

Andra Day is known for her rhythmic mix of gospel, jazz, and blues music. Rise Up made its mark, not only in the music industry, but on the world by its inspirational message of persistence and standing up for justice, equality, and kindness. The song demonstrates the importance of community and identity, and the song especially became popular during the BLM Movement.

(WITH SONGS I'VE LISTENED TO - Listen for advocacy in songs your hear!)

Lady Gaga is know for being bold, unique, and making a statement. Her ground-breaking 2011 track, Born This Way, illustrates how everyone is made the way they are by who they want to be, and that self identity is self identified. By empowering women and the LGTBQ+ community, Gaga has created an open and welcoming musical atmosphere.

Taylor Swift is undoubtedly known for not being afraid to speak her mind. In her song The Man, she calls out gender injustices in the workplace and overall. In her song, Only the Young, Taylor addresses how young people must use their voice in order t make pivotal change in the world.

Anne with an E is one of my favorite TV Shows because of its interweaving of imagery and reality. The show tackles many issues including sexism, the typical nuclear family, racism, human rights, etc. A really powerful scene for viewers like me is the one that the image is taken from on the left from Season 3, Episode 7. Anne and her classmates organized a demonstration at her town's town council meeting due to the council wanting to shut their school's newspaper down in response to a recent op-ed piece Anne wrote about consent. The students and their teacher didn't believe this action was fair since freedom of speech is a human right, and in the end, justice prevailed.

Although New Girl more often than not has me laughing, the show does include a lot of touching moments. One profound moment was when Jess and Cece go campaigning for Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election in Season 6, Episode 2. The women go around the city, and go up to each door to try to persuade citizens to vote. The two even end up in a sorority house because the girls promised them that they'd join their campaign. The episode itself touched issues like sexism and civic engagement, and looking back, it's really interesting to see what went into the election. 

ON TELEVISION

In Community, a group of community college students come together to form a study group, much like building a team. In Season 2, Episode 3, two of the study group members, Annie and Brita, decide to raise money for a recent oil spill in the Gulf. In addition to fundraising, they have a demonstration with them, and they are educating people on the issue. The fundraiser didn't go as planned with 'the oil tank' getting spilled on both of them, but they did end of raising money and were able to educate themselves and others on the issue.

(with some shows I like - look for advocacy in your favorite shows!)

In general, the show Parks and Rec covers a variety of topics within advocacy, and especially with civic engagement. Since the parks and recreation departments works a lot with the people and their needs, several different issues are advocated for and acted upon. An example of this is when they fixed up lot 48, which was just a huge pit a resident's backyard, and turned it into a playground. Leslie Knope, the show's main character, went through a lot of processes in order to accomplish her goal like fundraising, campaigning, negotiating, and physical labor of building the playground. However, in the end it was well worth it because it provided the community with the benefit of having a beautiful neighborhood playground.

In podcasts

Pod Save the People shares a collection of stories and perspectives that are often overlooked, including surrounding people of color. DeRay Mckesson hosts the podcast, and explores a different take on current events with special guests.

The Activist Files dives into different perspectives of the people who are combatting inequality and injustice. They interview artists, lawyers, and activists, and hear about their stories as well as their work highlights. The podcast is by the Center for Constitutional Rights.

The New Activist invites viewers to hear about the struggles and successes in advocacy through listening to different activists and leaders share their advocacy stories. By learning about others' motivators, we're able to become inspired to make our own step into advocacy. The podcast is by the International Justice Mission.

The Bad Activist Podcast focuses on trying to be the best advocate you can be in this crazy world. Through the podcast, listeners can learn and grow by considering a variety of perspectives, collaborating, and working towards shaping a better world.

Polititeen is a podcast that is made by teens, and that shares the perspective of young people. Their intent is to change the way that listeners look at information, and to have them evaluate all perspectives of the issue. 

Activist, You! is a podcast centered around social justice for kids and family. On the podcast, youth advocates share their advocacy journey, and inform audiences on their specific topic. Basically, the podcast is by kids, for kids!

(WITH SOME PODCASTS I'VE HEARD OF - LOOK FOR ONES around advocacy that YOU'D LIKE TO LISTEN TO!)

IN MOVIES

When you think of Ferris Bueller, you probably think of his elaborate scheme to cut class at the end of his senior year in high school. Although his whole act was a lie, his school all rallied together to show him support, and created the 'Save Ferris' sign on their town's water tower.  The community that was created and strengthened when Ferris was absent was very inspiring and amazing considering the sort amount of time that Ferris was gone. It really shows that the students have a tight bond, and that Ferris is quite the leader.

Moxie exemplifies the movement of modern feminism.  16-year-old Vivian unintentionally sparked a movement against unchecked behavior towards girls at her school through a zine she started called 'Moxie'. Originally inspired by her mother's advocate past, Vivian creates new friendships with other girls her age as well as additional allies to break down cliques and stereotypes at their school. In this movie, Vivian inspires other students who feel voiceless or ignored to speak up and make a difference in their school atmosphere.

In The Hate You Give, Starr demonstrates the importance and power of speaking up in the face of injustice. After Starr and her childhood best friend, Khalil, are pulled over by the police for 'failing to signal a lane change', Starr witnesses Khalil get fatally shot at the hands of the police officers. Although this moment empowered her to combat the racial injustice in her community and worldwide, it was difficult for her at first because she was scared about what could happen to her or her family if she did. In addition, she feared that her classmates at her predominantly white school wouldn't understand and would think of her differently. In the end, Starr decides to persist and use her voice in Khalil's memory.

During the late 1800s, the Industrial Revolution was moving at full speed, and many jobs became available. However, with the surplus of jobs, the wages associated with those jobs were not fair and suitable. In addition, the conditions that laborers were put under were unsafe and inhumane, and for the newspaper boys in Newsies, they felt powerless. When the prices for newspapers at distribution centers rises, the newsies are angered, and so they begin a strike. In the movie, the newsies learn the value and importance of teamwork, and how their act of courage can inspire others who are similar to them.