Of sex work, media and drama

 

SLE Int with a prostitute red-light_district_road_sign_258435

Well, we all know what the media is capable of. It can either make you or break you! That’s exactly what media has done in the case of an actress (I’m not naming her or giving any clues of her credentials because I have ethics and know them well). By compelling each one of us to see the dirty picture” this actress was involved in, the media has crossed its line again. Yes, media has the right to freedom of expression. But, it should know where to draw the line. By depicting the entire story as a “high-profile prostitution racket”  and flashing 
the actress’ face and pictures across social media, newspapers and on television, the media has done the damage.

The skewed coverage of the incident by the media raises numerous questions. First, why is the media playing the “moral police”? What right does the media have in digging into a person’s personal life? Did the media make an effort to find out the big-wigs/businessmen/politicians/pimps running the prostitution racket? Why isn’t any of that publicised and flashed in our faces? Why is the actress being made the soft target? Why is the media defaming her when she has such great credentials in her film career? Does the media even realise how difficult it is for a person to make a career in an industry dominated by powerful families, generations who have ruling it? When the media knows that naming the person and giving out her credentials is not right, why couldn’t it be careful instead of shamelessly flashing her name everywhere? 

Websites like NDTV, DNA and newspapers like Deccan Chronicle, Times of India and every other name have ensured that they give out details of her entire career. What was worse was there were websites that had headlines revealing her entire film career and videos showing how she “stooped so low.” And, all these stories did not have her quotes but had quotes of an inspector saying “she did so because she was running out of money.” 

We have no right to judge her. In fact, what she does is none of our business. In fact, the media has tried to undo the damage by running stories saying some XYZ famous director now wants to cast her in his film because he believes in her. What we need to question is, why such a mad rush to fill your 24X7 bulletins with such stories which violate journalistic ethics? Why should you have debates in “naming and shaming” the actress? Why should you link “Indian culture” to every damn thing and then make people on your show say it is against “our culture”? 

The actress might have had her reasons. But, this issue also exposes the perception of a majority towards prostitution. It is true that some high-profile people run these sex rackets. But, do we even bother to know about what pushes people into sex work? Most sex workers do not take it up because they are interested in it. They do it because they find no other way. One can argue that there are so many ways to earn money. But, our society is so hell-bent on defaming anyone who doesn’t fit their bill. 

This incident also raises questions on what kind of a person you are, about your perceptions, about your empathy towards other human beings. Why have we as a society become judgemental about everyone’s lives? Why are we not so concerned about our own lives as much as we scan others’ lives? What we first need to do is to look at how best we are and then start talking about others. It saves the world from a lot of crap talk and save us time!

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