As the wonderful John Lennon once wrote “Imagine there’s no heaven, it’s easy if you try.” This well known song has brought people together in different scenarios to provide a positive outlook on life. The song provides examples of barriers that set individuals apart from one another, including countries, religion, wealth, etc.
Now “imagine” seeing a video compilation of random celebrities singing this song to provide “relief” for the coronavirus. Personally, I cringed immediately. First off, I would like them all to explain to me how this video helps people. They might say something along the lines of helping people stay positive and giving people hope.
Well I hope this is not the only thing they are doing to raise awareness for the virus. Putting out a video of you and your other famous friends singing does not help anyone. The video has a lack of originality. I don’t know how many more celebrity singing compilations I can take. People are getting sick and dying, others are struggling with unemployment, and others do not have a healthy household to stay self-quarantined in. But don’t worry, this video of some tone-deaf celebrities will help I guess.
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We are in this together, we will get through it together. Let’s imagine together. Sing with us ❤ All love to you, from me and my dear friends. #WeAreOne ....... #KristenWiig #JamieDornan @labrinth @james_marsden @sarahkatesilverman @eddiebenjamin @jimmyfallon @natalieportman @zoeisabellakravitz @siamusic @reallyndacarter @amyadams @leslieodomjr @pascalispunk @chrisodowd @hotpatooties #WillFerrell @markruffalo @norahjones @ashleybenson @kaiagerber @caradelevingne @anniemumolo @princesstagramslam
Some may feel special that Will Ferrell was featured, or even be happy to hear Sia sing more for than five seconds in the video, but the whole video itself is ironically unhelpful to everyone. Some may smile and think, “Well at least they tried,” but I will be honest: It is completely and utterly annoying that this video has come into our lives. As someone who wants life to get back to normal, I would rather see celebrities putting energy toward actually raising awareness for the coronavirus.
You know what all these celebrities have? Mansions with too many rooms to count, most likely including a movie theater, a game room and probably a gym. They also have a ton of money to pay for the essentials they need and assistance with getting essentials and other goods they might need during self-quarantine. And for the cherry on top, they have access to testing kits that the general public does not have access to.
Posting a video saying and, even worse, singing that “everything will be OK” does not make people feel better. We want actions to be taken, we want our jobs back, and we want our life back. And I know celebrities want the same because they are also “out of work” or whatever, but more can be done than just a singing video.
Take Rihanna for example (and she is an actual singer). Rihanna’s Clara Lionel Foundation donated $5 million to multiple organizations around the world to help fight coronavirus, according to CNN. Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds donated a total of $1 million as well to Feeding America and Food Banks Canada, per CBS. Stephen and Ayesha Curry donated money to the Alameda County Community Food Bank, CNN also reported. Eric Stonestreet donated 200,000 meals to Harvesters Kansas City, according to the Kansas City Star. And many more donated money or started campaigns.
Now, Gal Gadot, next time you think about posting a video to raise awareness for the coronavirus, rethink what you post in your video, and consider speaking out about the issue and taking action. Maybe use your platform to speak out to our president to provide testing kits for the general public and donate to research. Instead of asking for your celebrity friends to sing off key and ruin everyone's day, see if they would be willing to raise money with you for research, or ask if they will help support the general public in getting tested.
Audrey Kesler is a Sophomore from Prairie Village studying strategic communications.