New Year 2021: Cancel culture, Dalgona coffee, media trials and other things that should definitely be left behind in 2020
New Year 2021: Cancel culture, Dalgona coffee, media trials and other things that should definitely be left behind in 2020

2020, the year that people termed as the worst year ever, will undoubtedly go down in history as one of the most unforgettable years. From the coronavirus pandemic wreaking havoc on the world and forcing people to be confined in their homes to deadly explosions, wildfire and more, 2020 seemed like it couldn't get any worse.

And while we were busy paying attention to the worst events that took place during the annus horribilis, here's a list of itty-bitty things that are bizarre enough to be left behind in 2020.

Dalgona coffee

From 30 Day challenge to Until Tomorrow challenge, avid Instagram users came up with adequate ways to entertain us amid the coronavirus lockdown. One such trend that grabbed our attention was the Dalgona coffee challenge.

With Starbucks and other coffee bars being shut amid the pandemic-induced lockdown, whipping up some Dalgona coffee seemed like the perfect way to give your everyday brewed drink a twist. The viral way of making instant whipped up coffee required only 3 ingredients, but an insane amount of arm strength. While the viral pictures of the Korean style coffee did look aesthetically pleasing, the process of making the Dalgona coffee was absolutely wroth skipping.

Cancel culture

From Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone to restaurant aggregator and food delivery app Zomato, several celebrities and organizations became the victim of cancel culture or call-out culture in 2020.

Earlier this year, Padukone's decision to visit Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to express solidarity with students, who had been attacked, courted a controversy. After the pictures from her visit went viral on the internet, #BoycottChhapaak started trending on social media and several netizens 'cancelled' the actress for taking a political stand.

Meanwhile, JK Rowling, the author of 'Harry Potter' caused a stir after criticizing an article that used the phrase 'people who menstruate'. Rowling received a lot of flak for posting a series of 'transphobic' tweets.

Well, we're not saying that holding celebrities and influential people accountable for their mistakes is wrong. However, outright 'canceling' someone is as appalling as social media users collectively trolling someone.

Love Jihad

’Love jihad' or 'Romeo Jihad' is a conspiracy theory alleging that Muslim men are using emotional appeals and charm to entice young Hindu/non-Muslim girls into conversion by pretending to be in love.

Popularised by radical Hindu groups and political parties, they believe that Muslim men are trying to trick non-Muslim girls into conversion to expand India's Muslim population.

While the imaginary war against 'love Jihad' continues, the conversation about the same was rekindled on Twitter after the Tanishq ad went viral.

Well, labelling a harmless commercial as 'love jihad' is not only the perfect example of religious bigotry, it also shows that people think women should have no agency in choosing their own life-partners. Over the years, 'love jihad' has just become a blatant example of reminding the society that even the purest emotion of love can be used to perpetuate religious polarisation. That interfaith marriages are not sacred unions but a conspiracy by a minority religion of the country. That every consensual adult who chooses to marry a Muslim man has been 'brain-washed'.

In a country already divided by caste/religion, when a 45-second commercial tries to promote love and respect between two communities, it gets accused of promoting ‘love jihad’. Even witnessing Hindu-Muslim unity for a few seconds leaves bigots fuming. Perhaps, only few are wise enough to see the not-so-hidden political agenda behind it!

Media trails

Although some may argue that media trials are necessary, in some cases, the true essence of justice gets lost.

Sushant Singh Rajput, who was reportedly battling from depression, allegedly committed suicide on June 14. He was 34.

While the Enforcement Directorate, NCB and the CBI are still investigating the death case, the unfair media trials and witch-hunts already pronounced his girlfriend and actress Rhea Chakraborty guilty. Rhea didn't just face the wrath of furious 'SSR warriors', the 28-year-old and her family were also caused extreme trauma, courtesy to the constant sensationalisation of the case. From her father, a retired army officer, being hounded by the media outside her building compound to cameras zooming into her living room, Rhea was convicted by the media even before foul play could be established behind the actor's death.

In fact, she wasn't the only victim of unfair media trials.

During the insensitive coverage of the Sushant Singh Rajput death case, several others celebrities moved to court seeking to restrain news channels from making irresponsible remarks.

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Free Press Journal