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Teen Homelessness, In Sharp Focus

When we visualize a homeless person, we rarely imagine a young person standing on a street curb. The Do1Thing campaign is setting our reality straight. With the help of thirty world-renowned photographers and writers, the Do1Thing campaign is documenting the lives of homeless teenagers in America, with the goal of bringing awareness to this pressing issue. Most of these teenagers have grown out of foster care, and they are left to sleep on the streets. Do1Thing founder Pim Van Hemmen makes us realize that this bleak outlook for foster children does not have to be permanent: “It shouldn’t be that way,” he says. “It doesn’t have to be that way.”

Pileggi, JoAnn. “Teen Homelessness, In Sharp Focus.” RedBankGreen. 13 February 2009. Web. 5 July 2012. <http://www.redbankgreen.com/2009/02/do1thing.html>.

 

Green celebrities: How celebrities use their voices for environmental causes

Celebrity endorsement is a boon for corporations and causes of all types. This article emphasizes that many celebrities have brought attention to environmental issues over the years, and as a result, more people listen to, support and act on the issues. Through the process, celebrities also build their own positive images. Author John Traveler applauds celebrities’ willingness to step outside of the spotlight of Hollywood and take a stand for causes they are truly passionate about. He shows that celebrities have more to contribute to society than just entertainment media.

Traveler, John. “Green celebrities: How celebrities use their voices for environmental causes.” Helium. 19 September 2010. Web. 10 July 2012. <http://www.helium.com/items/1957481-green-celebrities-how-celebrities-use-their-voices-for-environmental-causes>.

 

From Massacres to Genocide: the Media, Public Policy, and Humanitarian Crises (review)

How can humanitarian disasters be resolved when local airwaves are clogged with advertisements and programs of self-interest? This review of From Massacres to Genocide: the Media, Public Policy, and Humanitarian Crises points out the book’s strong messages and its several shortfalls. The book examines the media’s role in humanitarian relief, and according to author Heather Bourbeau, the book successfully exposes the selfishness that is ironically present when relief agencies send aid. Some relief organizations compete to aid disaster victims for international exposure. Bourbeau also points out that the book has its downfalls. Most notably, all of its authors are from the United States, which hardly presents a fair international perspective. Bourbeau calls attention to the fact that media may not be the most efficient way to call for global action.

Bourbeau, Heather. “From Massacres to Genocide: The Media, Public Policy, and Humanitarian Crises (review).” Project Muse. 1997. Web. 10 July 2012. <http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/sais_review/summary/v017/17.1br_rotberg.html>.

 

How The Tuscaloosa News’ post-tornado tweeting helped bring home a Pulitzer Prize

The series of tornadoes that devastated the southern United States in 2011 destroyed myriads of homes and lives. For relief, many Americans turned toward a form of communication that is familiar and accessible – Twitter. This social media tool turned from a source of entertainment and chatting into a powerful tool for disaster relief. People in dire need posted their locations and condition, and activists soon came to their rescue. These tweets and “real time reporting” primarily led by Tuscaloosa News had such a great impact that it won a Pulitzer Prize, an indication of how social media is becoming a recognized force in the world. It is noteworthy that a social media site can transform into a lifeline for thousands of people.

Sonderman, Jeff. “How The Tuscaloosa News’ post-tornado tweeting helped bring home a Pulitzer Prize.” Poynter. 17 April 2012. Web. July 2012. <http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/media-lab/social-media/170607/how-the-tuscaloosa-news-post-tornado-tweeting-helped-bring-home-a-pulitzer-prize/>.

 

Ham Radio Operators Relay Messages, Help Save Lives After Hurricane Katrina

In the United States climate of high-tech gadgets and social media websites, radio may seem outdated and old-fashioned. However, its use for coordinating international aid is critical. When Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005, buildings were demolished and electrical power failed. Communication means were destroyed. Thousands of amateur “ham” radio operators traveled to the city and provided the communication necessary to call for supplies and to announce the discovery of survivors. This article focuses on the great impact that a seemingly outdated technology can have, and it highlights the generosity of many people who give up their time and leave their homes to help others.

Deitz, Corey. “Ham Radio Operators Relay Messages, Help Save Lives After Hurricane Katrina.” About.com Radio. 4 Sept. 2005. Web. 18 July 2012. <http://radio.about.com/od/amateurshortwave/a/aa090405a.htm>.

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