Have you ever done something you regret? Chances are the answer is “yes”.
Now think about being fired or permanently shamed by your community because of it. This is the reality for many celebrities and public figures. Having an event from their past, even if it’s just one, can shape how they are thought of today.
This can result in public shaming, boycotting and overall negative attention.
This is known as cancel culture. It is toxic and creates a world where people are defined by their mistakes.
Cancel culture encourages people to rush to judgement and is often based on one mistake or event. It does not consider any good actions or recent activities but focuses on one comment or action.
Some public figures that have been “cancelled” include Kevin Hart, James Charles and Kanye West. Recently, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau felt the toxic effects of cancel culture.
While some like West have had a history of controversies and poor decisions, others like Hart have not.
It is important to hold public figures accountable for their actions and mistakes but when we don’t give someone another chance, cancel culture becomes toxic.
Justified or not, too many people are getting caught up in this new cancel craze.
Hart was set to host the 2019 Oscars when tweets from 10 years ago surfaced.
These tweets included homophobic sentiments. Even after saying he would not repeat the jokes from the tweets of 2015, Hart was banned from hosting the Oscars.
Hart apologized for his tweets after they surfaced, but did not go on to host the Oscars.
How can we expect to learn and grow if we do not give others that chance?
Hart has not said anything homophobic since and has issued multiple apologies. If actions and apologies are not enough then what is?
Hart is now associated with the term “homophobic”.
Hart will never be better than this moment in time.
This is not a message we want to send. This is not holding public figures accountable, it is holding them back.
Someone we definitely want to hold accountable is our Prime Minister.
Recently, pictures of a 30-year-old Trudeau wearing blackface have surfaced. This was followed by cries of racism.
While the use of blackface should be criticized, calling Trudeau racist is based on these incidents from a decade ago.
Will Trudeau ever be better than this moment in time?
Trudeau issued a swift apology and addressed the issue. He acknowledged he was in the wrong and has shown that he has grown. If actions do truly speak louder Than words, Trudeau’s got them to back him up.
Trudeau has repeatedly shown his support for minorities in Canada, something people are forgetting in the wake of this scandal. Under his government, he has issued over three-hundred thousand permanent resident cards per year.
Does all this need to be thrown away over actions ten years ago?
It takes less time to see someone’s mistake and judge them based on that than it does to take the time to step back and research the person.
This is why cancel culture is so dangerous, it is easy to retweet and hold onto ta headline than it is to look at the whole picture.
This creates a toxic environment where people are not allowed to grow. but are instead forever defined by their past actions and mistakes.
Society should strive for a world where we can learn and grow from our mistakes, not one that holds us back.