The Canadian media has consistently portrayed refugees and immigrants from a negative perspective. However, this does not necessarily depict society's attitudes towards these individuals. As a matter of fact, there have been several peace protests that have been geared towards pushing for an improved perception of refugee and immigrants. However, as this paper will determine, most of the media outlets are out to make a quick buck. Humanity is geared to have n affinity for controversy (Dawson, 827). While this is the core human nature, it does not necessarily have to be the societys tendency towards the handling of issues regarding the less privileged. The media outlets have often created a mentality within the pubic that suggests that there is a crisis. The presence of any crisis requires a human being to develop fasts solutions. These solutions are often not the best as they are not clearly thought over. The end result is the public persecution of innocent refugees and immigrants.
The dehumanization of refugees has become a common phenomenon among the mainstream media outlets in Canada. This is because the media outlets have a goal to attain. Like any other business, they want to make money (Ashutosh and Alison, 335). This is only achievable if they make huge sales o their periodicals, journals, and newspapers. The current hot topic is one that revolves around the effects of having refugees and immigrants within Canadas borders. Portraying the presence of refugees in the country as being less threatening would obviously not bring the huge sales that the media outlets are obviously targeting (Dawson, 833). Therefore, they will use any means possible to dole out information that is not necessarily objective. The final result is that the public may have a negative perspective with regards to the portrayed crisis (Ashutosh and Alison, 340). This forces a monomaniacal perception of the problem that may arise as a result of letting refugees into the country. However, if the people of Canada are objective, they will see through this deceit and decide for their own selves not to be negatively influenced by the one-sided portrayals of the refugee situation (Esses, 9).
The media has often been known to use uncertainty with regards to social issues in order to sway public perceptions. This is of course aimed at swaying consumer demand for the very information they are dolling out (Dawson, 834). However, it takes both the media manipulation and the public acceptance of the warped information for the ideology to spread (Dawson, 835). Therefore, this speaks a lot with regards to the nations perception of how refugees and immigrants have affected the country. A negative perspective only needs a little fanning and the individual in question has all the reasons to believe that their ideologies are true (Esses, 12). However, most of the refugees and immigrants have been found to be trying to access Canada out of necessity, not malicious intentions. These individuals are faced with huge problems that have negatively affected their capability to remain in their home countries (Esses, 17). Most of these problems can be traced back to conflicts that have been financed by western countries. Therefore, it should be the western countries offering a hand of help to those who are faced with the issues that arise from the conflicts. However, the opposite is true, most people do not want to be involved in developing lasting solutions for the people who are considered immigrants or refugees. This depicts the Canadian society as one that is self centered at the core (Esses, 19). However, it is clear o see the role that the media has played in developing this self centeredness among the Canadian people.
The events leading to the perceived refugee crisis have elicited different emotions from the people of Canada. For instance, when pictures of a drowned baby surfaced online, most people were seen to be empathetic of the plight of the refugees across the world (Dawson, 834). However, this problem seemingly continued to grow making it necessary for many countries around the world to join hands and work together in providing the results required (Dawson, 839). The results mentioned here is the continued resettlement of refugees as well as offering asylum to others. However, the media has consistently shifted focus from the plight of the refugees to the negative effects of having refugees in Canada (Dawson, 841). For instance, the media has highlighted the fact that the presence of refugees in the country will most likely result in the transmission of communicable diseases such as cholera. Another issue that may arise is the fact that media highlights that some of the refugees are terrorists masquerading as refugees. This is a one sided way of addressing the issue at hand (Dawson, 839). It moves the publics attention from the plight of the refugees to the negative results of the entrance of the refugee into Canadian borders.
The media has for a long time highlighted the negative effects of having refugees within a given community. This has created a perception that refugees are tantamount to having vermin in ones residence. Nothing could be further from the truth. When the entrance of refugees into a country has been organized, there need not be any worry about the negative effects arising from having refugees within ones borders (Dawson, 841). However, the media has made it practically impossible to alter this perception the public eye. The continued bashing of the ideology that refugees are a cancer to the society has been hammered into the minds of the people of Canada. This has happened since time in memorial. For instance, a similar situation in the year 1999 was also reported as a crisis (Ashutosh and Alison, 350). This was despite the fact that the situation was minimal and could be handled.
The media capitalized on the societys tendency towards fear whenever their status quo is threatened. The society on the other hand has place too much trust on the media outlets. The society does not have a means of analyzing with a tinge of suspicion the information provided by the media outlets (Dawson, 843). The result is that the society becomes biased towards the plight of the refugees and immigrants. However, it is good to note that not all people in Canada have bought that rhetoric. This can be proven by the regular peaceful rallies that are held by non-governmental organizations with the aim of sensitizing the public on the plight of the refugee. Therefore, there is hope for humanity after all. When a small group of people take it upon themselves to reverse the negative publicity instituted by those in the media industry, it clearly portrays the capability of the society in question, in this the Canadian people, to empathize with the problems of the less fortunate rather than persecute them.
Ashutosh, Ishan, and Alison Mountz. "The Geopolitics Of Migrant Mobility: Tracing State Relations Through Refugee Claims, Boats, And Discourses." Geopolitics 17.2 (2012): 335-354.Academic Search Premier. Web. 21 Nov. 2015.
Dawson, Carrie. "Refugee Hotels: The Discourse Of Hospitality And The Rise Of Immigration Detention In Canada."University Of Toronto Quarterly 83.4 (2014): 826-846.Academic Search Premier. Web. 21 Nov. 2015.
Esses, Victoria, et al. "Justice, Morality, And The Dehumanization Of Refugees." Social Justice Research 21.1 (2008): 4-25.Academic Search Premier. Web. 21 Nov. 2015.
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