Watching the new Star Wars trailer gave me chills, and I’m sure everyone else who grew up with it and had its nostalgia encoded in their DNA felt the same energy (the Force, if I may) flow through them. Or, despite all my practice in deconstructing and decoding mediated cultural norms, beliefs, and behaviors, I’m still fundamentally a sucker.
I blame John Williams. That man is channeling eternity in his scores.
The light is always balanced out by the dark side, of course. The latter is epitomized by the Twitter stormtroopers identifying Star Wars as anti-white. I could go off on a tirade against their idiocy, but that would be ignoring that they are operating from a worldview that they’ve been taught, internalized, and hardened over the apparently unswerving course of their life. So it’s more a lament that I experience in seeing their misguided hate coalesce into a social media movement. Then again, perhaps we shouldn’t legitimize it and grant these people any authority by calling what they’re doing a movement. It’s an aberrant obstacle. Not on the way to participating in a cultural phenomenon (which is an utterly commercial endeavor at the end of the day), but on the way to engaging in more empathic dialogue with one another.
The fear captured by the ease with which we recklessly wield our hashtags should serve as a reminder of why such reductive forms of communications cannot become our primary means of connection, especially since they’re primarily yielding disconnection. Though that may not be a fair conclusion, given that I’m isolating one particular and universalizing it as a #trend.
So what am I saying? I’ll figure that out later. For now, may the force be with us all.