Yay for controversy.
As many of you know, today many people who believe in the movement to end modern day slavery, specifically the End It Movement, are removing themselves from social media to honor those that have disappeared from slavery. I don't know much about this movement, so if you want information, Google is always at your service.
I've seen several criticisms of this as well as justifications. Most of the criticisms are founded in the fact that it's a movement started by Christians and was unknown before the Passion conference and that making a statement isn't actually "doing anything." Personally, I think that it is a cause worthy of attention, regardless of how the issue was brought to light. Yes, modern slavery existed before Passion, but it's still something that deserves to be brought into the forefront by any means that could make a change. It's not hypocritical to become passionate about a cause that was preexisting only after learning about its importance.
Those justifying this demonstration state that people will notice their absence from social media and will think about the implications of all the people that have disappeared due to slavery. They claim that this will help raise awareness. This has sparked criticism that the day is only so that people can feel like they're helping without actually doing anything. I feel this is justified to an extent, but the whole Kony deal made a lot of people jaded towards social justice movements on the internet. Educating people about a problem is a very important step in bringing about any sort of justice. If people don't care, then you can't do anything to bring progress. I also think that most of the people participating in this movement realize that not tweeting or updating Facebook for a day will not directly impact those affected by slavery. They generally do care about this cause and want to educate people about it.
In my opinion, however, silencing yourself to honor those affected might not be the best way to bring attention to your cause. Case in point, I have yet to look up a single thing about End It. Perhaps if my news feed was flooded with information and how I could help I might feel more inclined to get involved. I think that that's the important piece missing from this movement. Education is incredibly important, but at the end of the day it needs to lead a direct impact. In summary, I think that modern day slavery is an important cause and so is education about it, but this specific demonstration might not be the most effective.
So, if you're one of those that believes passionately in this, please tell me and everyone else what we can do to help!
Love and hugs,
"Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it." -Julia Child