Beware of warmongering in media

The United States military has a history of utilizing media to help push warmongering sentiments. Yet as the country continues in the age of social media, the military has upped its campaigning to promote their pro-war and pro-military stance. 

Superhero movies are perhaps some of the most sensationalist pieces of media in history. The latest Avengers movie, “Endgame,” grossed about $2.7 billion and shattered countless box office records. The hype surrounding the film dominated social media and the TV airwaves, and the film received massive praise, as did many of its predecessors. Unfortunately, many superhero movies glorify war in order to encapsulate a sensational plot filled with action sequences. 

A good portion of Marvel movie plots revolve around a war, and there are clear heroes and villains in such conflicts. These struggles are sensationalized and promote the notion that war is the best method of action. For example, Captain America represents a more direct picture of blind nationalism towards the United States. 

This is not to say that being Marvel’s number one fan is inherently wrong, rather it should come with understanding the influence that the military industrial complex has in the creation of these films.

One recent controversy in the summer of 2020 involves the military creating Twitch streaming accounts and subsequently banning people who would criticize their involvement in the Middle East and other parts of the war. Not only was the military banning people a violation of their freedom of speech from a government institution, but it represents a more sinister problem: the military is targeting the youth with their propaganda and covering it with innocuous media. By creating a Twitch account the military is not only actively trying to target its message toward younger people, but they are also painting the institution as a fun and happy place that is emblematic of the average citizen. 

Clearly the military is trying to court potential recruits and supporters for their cause. They are able to do this by controlling the narrative about their institution and painting it as benign to society and not giving potential recruits all the information that they would need to make a balanced opinion on it. 

The military is already funded with trillions of dollars from the federal budget, there is no need for them to continue overstepping its grounds. As consumers of media, people need to understand the underlying propaganda that they face on a daily basis.

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