Saturday, April 9, 2011

Stuff Makes Me Angry.

People who know me well know that I'm not one to keep up with the news all that much. Politics aren't my thing, and I often don't find out about current events unless it's through someone, and therefore later.

Though I did find this bit of news through Modblog (and therefore someone else this time too), I thought I'd bring attention to it. Most mass-media gets hate from many people for many reasons, so this is nothing new, but at the same time, I still felt the need to share it because of it's irritating nature.

ABC recently did a story called "Spock Ears for Kids," as notified by the little headline at the bottom of the screen the entire time. Well, this title is already pretty insulting. For those of you that haven't seen this story, or don't know anything about ear mods, what they're really trying to talk about is pointed ear procedures. Some argue it's a trend now that the whole supernatural thing is "in," but to many, it's just another body modification that some people chose to do. After titling it, two women spend most of the time in the beginning and end of the segment making fun of people with pointy ears, and comparing them to things like people from Avatar, elfin girl characters in movies like Lord of the Rings, Spock, and even Santa's elves.

They go on to interview a man named Steve Haworth, who often does these procedures, showing him in the video working on a girl with notably pointed ears. They introduce him by his name, and then say he "calls himself a body modification artist," as the modblog writer Bob points out, makes it "as if it's not a real thing." It's pretty sad to be an artist and have a bunch of news chicks jab and mock you by debating your status in the art realm. I mean, I've never had ear surgery, but it takes a lot of care and knowledge to do these kinds of things. To do it right as well, requires artistry.

Bob also points out, "they spent more time mocking him and those who get the procedure done then reporting anything substantial." The two women also interview one girl who talks about her pointed ears (which aren't really that pointed), and then proceed to take her "I thought about it for 18 months and am a Trekkie" statement to transition into putting up digitally altered pictures of themselves with pointed ears in mockery of others.

After showing many images, headlined as a procedure "for kids," insinuating only dumb teenagers do this kind of thing, they bring in a doctor who talks about the danger of it all. Infection is something to watch out for, which is legitimate, but they also talk about it's permanency and how this is not irreversible, like piercings or tattoos are (which the latter is pretty arguable still).

But I'd like to think most people getting this done are not as worried about the irreversible part. Like many other more permanent mods, most think about it for an allotted time before getting the procedure done. So when having their ears sculpted, I bet they're probably ok with their situation, and perfectly aware it's not reversible - it's not negative to them. Unlike many beliefs about people in the modded community, there are plenty of us who have a head on our shoulders, and think about these things before getting them done. Getting tattoos and other modifications on a whim is a negative stereotype people think about a lot. We don't all do that, despite some's views.

Though there are plenty of non-negative, non-biased stories on body modification out there, there are still really annoying mass-media representations of people. Poor Steve Haworth, he's probably going to get a lot of negative attention. Sure, elf ears aren't on my list, but why poke fun at the people that do it? It's their choice, how does that hurt the reporters in any way? And god, the mass mockery, and the lack of an open mind.... Sometimes, I just can't stand people.

So now that I've ranted, here it is:

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