Stef Zucconi in a recent blog post, replete with fine photographs, recently touched on something which has been bugging me lately me, especially whilst I eat my dinner watching the Sci-Fi Channel - Middle Class Guilt
. Every single break during Star Trek @ 7pm, & most of the channels other programming, has adverts for every laudable charity imaginable: Children-Animals-Water-Oxfam-The Rice Pudding Protection League you name it they have an advert. All it takes is "Just" £2, £3 or £10 a month to assuage your pampered, guilty, sci-fi loving conscience whilst you sit eating & watching frivolous junk on a cheesy cable channel as millions starve or get thrown down stairways.
I guess somebody out there assumes that Sci-Fi/Star Trek viewers are idealistic, thoughtful, sentimental types with high amounts of disposable income, slightly dumb, and therefore susceptible to this 'noble' and assiduous form of 'emotional blackmail'. You never know, they might be onto something. However, as one advert and campaign laudibly but rather illogically proclaims in absolute terms:
"Together we can put a stop to Child Abuse.FULL STOP"
Any rational or remotely critical person, Sci-fan or otherwise, should be able to understand in reality regardless of whether the problem is environmental or societal, money and regular donations to a charity isn't the magic bullet or panacea that makes the bad things go away 'FULL STOP'.
Especially when the campaign in question tackles something so complex and emotive as Child abuse.
I don't have a problem with genuine charities, sadly I don't really care for the type of patronising, emotional blackmail, in our increasingly 'dumbed down' popular
western capitalist culture, which simplifies complex issues whilst providing materialistic solutions such as £10 a month and engaging in empty sloganeering like "I'm in".
I know its a cliche, but ultimately attitudes, perceptions and inequalities across all social classes & peoples , let alone the middles classes and Sci-fi fans, need to improve and become a bit more enlightened to properly address these and other woes, rather than having charities begging for money on the pretense of providing definitive materialistic solutions to intractable social and societal problems. Utopian sentiments perhaps, but people and the world need to change.