Op-Eds Opinion

Detore: While America anxiously waits for an end, at least Game of Thrones is back

Daniela Detore
Op-Ed Editor

Toxic masculinity and sexual harassment has been going on far too long.

And as stated clearly in the latest Gillette ad, “We can’t laugh it off.”

Not anymore at least.

Thirty years ago the razor company launched an ad campaign called, “The Best A Man Can Get.” For some time after, the tagline embodied the ideology of what men set out for: the best. On Jan. 13, Gillette released a controversial ad exploiting men suggesting they can be better.

They titled their new campaign, “The Best Men Can Be.” In a short video, Gillette illustrates all the different ways men convey toxic masculinity on a day-to-day basis, whether it’s sexual harassment, bullying, belittling women in the workfield, or catcalling them in passing.

It was an enlightening ad. It was finally a big voice to break all the silence that men have become conditioned to. Although exploiting men and the practice of toxic masculinity, Gillette was very technical in their presentation to allow the chance for women to know that the lashback they are experiencing today is repercussions from the media and society of the past.

Gillette called to all men through the words and wisdom of Terry Crews, former NFL player and actor/activist, who said, “Men need to hold other men accountable.”

And when speaking in terms of accountability, it’s hard not to mention R. Kelly.

The six-part docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly, debuted on Lifetime Jan. 3. Said to be one of the most successful R&B singers of this generation, R. Kelly’s career has been riddled with rumors of assault, pedophilia and predatory behavior from the start. However, all the allegations seemed to never touch the artist and his career kept growing larger despite the claims.

Within the series several women stepped forward from the shadows and accused the musician of sexual assault and allegations of underage girls who found themselves imprisoned in his home and recording studio.

With over 50 interviews including civil rights activist Tarana Burke, musicians John Legend and Sparkle, talk-show host Wendy Williams, ex-wife Andrea Kelly, ex-girlfriend Kiti Jones, brothers Carey and Bruce Kelly, and many others, Lifetime TV produced a groundbreaking series that has since pushed R. Kelly into the light to face his allegations.

Although many label this the era of the female with the #MeToo and #Timesup movement leading the charge, they are not the only group who has been ostracized.

Amidst the longest government shutdown in history, the 45th President, Donald Trump, initiated a “transban” against all transgender people who serve in the armed forces.

The armed forces, while not intentionally meaning to be a progressive unit, is. It has paved the way for civil rights across the country by embodying different minority groups for generations. African American and Caucasian people have been serving side by side since the mid 1940s. Since then, the armed forces have opened their arms to members of the LGBTQ community beginning with Gay personnel, then expanding their reaches to women and eventually the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama, officially welcomed transgender people to serve this country in 2016.

This “transban” reverses more than 70 years of military integration and could be perceived as a public attack on civil rights. As quoted in the Washington Post, Jennifer Levi, an attorney who represents some of the challengers to the policy and runs the transgender-rights project at LGBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, said, “The Trump administration’s cruel obsession with ridding our military of dedicated and capable service members because they happen to be transgender defies reason and cannot survive legal review.”

The government shutdown is set to reactivate Feb. 15, unless the $5 billion border wall between the United States and Mexico is passed in Congress.

While a series of waiting across America is taking place for the nation’s fate, the wait for some other things, is coming to an end.

In other words, winter is finally here.

The season premiere date has been set for the smash-hit TV series, Game of Thrones. The final season will air Sunday, April 14.

The world’s most popular show came to be by possessing three dragons, kings and queens, heirs to the throne and multiple year-long seasons. All awhile, an army of the dead, led by the Night King, pushes against the wall of civilization, otherwise known as The Wall. It separates Westeros, from Wildling country. All this action for one thing, the Iron Throne.

As the long summer ends and winter arrives, the season is packed with episodes averaging $10 million and a final battle scene that will outshine Game of Thrones most famous battle scene, The Battle of the Bastards.

Over 400 days have passed since the last episode of season seven aired and not a day has gone by that fans haven’t wondered what’s in store for season eight. Viewers have been disclaimed that they will find out who sits on the Iron Throne at the end. With at least 10 main characters, there is many conspiracy as to who will sit on the throne at the end. Creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have a knack for killing off main characters and hiding what is to come in plain sight.

Theories have arose around Bran and the Night King being one of the same, the very obvious Jon and Daenerys sit on the Iron Throne together, Melisandre returns from Volantis with a massive army called the Fiery Hand to save the day or considering there is no happy endings, the army of the dead that now has giants and, don’t forget, a dragon, it might be just the end for all of the favorite characters. Game of Thrones fans are used to no happy endings, so it may just be time to admit that there will not be one at the finish line.

All that’s for certain is that winter is here.

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