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#WOW Trending Stories

Way out West takes a look at some of the stories that have been making the headlines and filling up our newsfeeds today.

#BlueMonday

It’s the third Monday of January, which for a few years now has been dubbed Blue Monday and referred to as the most depressing day of the year.

Debate rages on whether #BlueMonday is a good thing or not. Some people argue that suggesting one day of the year can be more depressing than any other trivialises mental health; while it has been pointed out by many that the whole concept was invented by a travel company to try and sell more summer holiday packages, so shouldn’t be taken too seriously.

However, no matter how dubious the origins are, anything that raises awareness can surely only be a good thing.

Mental health has often wrongfully been swept under the rug, with some sufferers even feeling guilty or ashamed for having to deal with it.

A major theme of Mental Health Awareness Week this year was that mental illness, despite not always carrying the same physical, outward symptoms, is just as important as physical illness. In the past, this hasn’t been the case; mental health has often been swept under the rug, with some sufferers even feeling guilty or ashamed for having to deal with it.

Mental health issues – particularly anxiety – are prevalent among young people. There are often throwaway, cliche explanations for this, including a lack of sleep, or an obsession with things such as social media. Anxiety, however, goes far beyond this. It comes from a feeling of uncertainty about what is ahead, and Millennial’s, at a stage of life where so much can seem uncertain, are more vulnerable to it than most.

You can check out of previous blog on mental health to find out more about mental health and where you can get help.

#FriendsonNetflix

Friends, one of the most popular sitcoms of all time, is now on Netflix, and as crazy as it might seem for those who grew up with it, new audiences are now coming to it for the first time. While this is likely to create a new host of fans, it’s also generated some criticism, with some millennials even accusing the show of sexism and homophobia, amongst other things.

This comes from the way the show jokes about issues that wouldn’t be considered appropriate to make fun of today, but although people will feel uneasy about certain jokes in Friends to various extents, it’s only to be expected that a show filmed predominantly in the 90’s doesn’t entirely reflect the society of 2018.

A few weeks ago, comedian Sarah Silverman commented on the way comedy isn’t evergreen.On Real Time with Bill Maher, host, Bill Maher, brought up the subject that ‘there are words we used to use, all comedians did, fifteen years ago, and we don’t use them anymore,’ to which Silverman added: ‘ten years from now, we’ll look back on this show and go “can you believe we said X, Y and Z,” and that’s ok.’ She later continued: ‘there are things I’ve said in my comedy that I’m sure will be held against me that I don’t stand by, that I’m embarrassed by.’

It would seem natural then that twenty years from now, once again even the most careful, politically correct TV of today will seem out of touch. When this happens, TV is better looked upon as a sign of cultural improvement, rather than something that should be binned the second it becomes slightly behind the times. As such, people watching friends for the first time should simply try and enjoy it based on the context of its time, rather than how it compares to society in 2018.

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#MLKDay

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an American Federal Holiday observed on the third Monday of January each year, which roughly coincides with King’s birthday, January 15.

Martin Luther King Jr. was the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law. On #MLKDay people have been celebrating the work and the words of Martin Luther King Jr. and how both need to be continued today.

We looked at the importance of iconic historical images such as Martin Luther King’s I Have a Dream speech a while back. You can  read it here.

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