Text B assignment – big brother Isn’t watching you. The UK riots during the summer of 2011 came as a shock to a lot of people, not only In England but all over the entire world. Worldwide people watched astonished as CNN and BBC showed pictures of widespread looting, burning of buildings and cars and serious aggression against the police. During the riots, most of the comments from politicians and other officials were condemnation of the rioters calling them mindless savages, but after some time more critical and varied questions began to emerge.
Russell Brand, an English comedian, actor, musician and writer who now lives In Los Angels, Is one of the messengers bringing critical questions of how and why something like this could happen. In his commentary “Big Brother isn’t watching you” published at the Guardian’s website in 2011, he discusses some of the factors that might have led to the riots other than Just mindlessness. Employing his background in comedy, Brand uses a very distinct style of writing when delivering his thoughts and attitudes on the UK riots. One of his main arguments is that all blame Anton be placed on the rioters alone.
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The politicians, the cooperate businesses, the media and society in general must take their share of the responsibility and actively try to answer the question: “Why is this happening? ” Russell Brand uses a lot of effort in trying to convince his readers that even though he now lives in the US, he still has the right to comment on UK riots. Brand is still English even though his home Is In America, “l feel proud to be English. Proud to be a Londoner. ” (p. 8, 1. 35) He identifies with the rioters, and wants people to look things room their point of view.
Brand himself lived in areas affected by riots, and has tried to stand at the other side of police shields during anta-capitalist protest. Therefore he argues that explaining widespread looting, violent demonstrations and arson in different English cities with words like mindless, unjustifiable and unacceptable is futile rhetoric. When young people take to the streets It Is for reasons more complicated than can be explained by empty words and phrases, such words as politicians do. The young people take to the streets because of lack of sense, and cause they feel like they aren’t included In the society. I found those protest exciting , yes, because I was young and a bit of a twerp but also, I suppose, because there was a void in me. ” (p. 3, 1. 74-75) Even though Russell Brand had a loving mom and a creating dad, he still took out on the streets and participated In street riots. He can sort of relate to how the young riots feel like, but he still wonder how kids without love, care or opportunities feels like, since he had those opportunities. Brand Is using more time trying to understand the riots and their actions, rather than tempting testify them.
Since Brand have been in anti-capitalist demonstrations shows that Brand’s position isn’t completely objective, something the comment also clearly reflects. HIS sentiments lies with the rioters more than with the politicians and the cooperate businesses. In trying to get his message across, Brand uses his background as a comedian and also his skills as a songwriter. The commentary is Walt n mourn, Jokes, sarcasm Ana Irony; stylistic evolves Tanat all make Nils text entertaining, while at the same time keeping it serious.
The main targets of this attack” are the conservative politicians such as Prime Minister David Cameron, Loon’s mayor Boris Johnson and Home Secretary Theresa May. All of these persons receive a spiteful comment on their handling of the crisis, “l mean even David Cameron came back from his holiday. Eventually. The Tuscan truffles lost their succulence when the breaking glass became too loud to ignore” (p. 2, 1. 25-27). The skills of a comedian are employed here, since he is making fun and roasting people. As readers we feel entertained because it is simply funny, but the seriousness of the commentary remains.
Another device used by Brand is the direct style and the use of rhetorical questions, “She was the Portuguese transsexual. Remember? No? ” (p. L, l. 8-10). Russell Brand also speaks directly to his readers and even whispers when he uses brackets, “(all right, an Essex boy)” (p. 8, 1. 35). By using these devices we get close to Brand and are more easily convinced by his arguments. Politicians, co-operate businesses, the media and society in general all share the responsibility of the UK riots, but instead of being interested in the most important question, “Why is this happening? P. 8, 1. 47), they seem more interested in “pushing” the problem aside and quickly moving along. Russell Brand compares the situation to an experience he had while working for the TV-program Big Brother. During the show, a violent episode occurred in the house, but instead of showing the public what had happened and trying to explain it, Brand says that, “Police were called, tapes were edited and the carnival rolled on. ” (PI-2, 1. 16-17), and he was told to be discreet about his statements to the public.
By providing us with this story, Brand compares the Big Brother tuition with the I-J riots, and thereby discretely suggests that the same thing was done here, politicians weren’t interested in explaining or really understanding why it had happened, they Just needed to get on with business as usual, according to Brand. The Big Brother term is also used in connection with the title of the commentary, but some changes have been added, “Big brother isn’t watching you. ” The title builds on Brand’s thoughts on how the government avoids to pay attention to its voters and especially its young, poor voters.
According to Brand, young people, the hoodoos as he calls them, don’t feel represented in parliament because they feel that the politicians are more interested in business politic than their voters’ interests, “Politicians don’t represent the interest of the people who don’t vote. They barely care about the people who do vote. They look after the corporations who get them elected. ” (p. 10, 1. 94-95). The commentary is at times very one sided of the situation in Britain and in its critique of the British conservative politicians.
Brand is rather black ND white in his views on British politics; either the politicians listen to the co- operations and work for them, or they listen to the normal British citizen and work for them. Brand’s past as an anti-capitalist demonstrator might be in the way of his judgment and thereby making his arguments one sided and black and white. Having a background and an understanding of the environment, combined with use of humorist style of writing; Brand delivers a strong critique of the British society. He understands the rioters and why they act like they do.
Both rioters, Politicians, co- operate businesses, and the media must all take responsibility and take share in the Lame. Brand doesn’t claim to nave ten solution, out en Knows It Isn’t a political one. The roots of the problem run deeper and must be solved in a human manner rather than in a political manner. In order to get to this human solution, British voters have to look for politicians who hold the right values, which are values of love, care, inclusion and representation for all – also the hoodoos and riots of society.