2150: Jonathan Butler and the effects of raw footage

(This is my ninth blog entry for my fall semester J2150 class.)

As I’ve learned over the past month or so, editing video is one of the keys to making a creative and effective multimedia piece. That being said, there are some events that need not be edited in order to be extremely powerful and impactful.

You’d have to be living under a rock in Columbia to not have heard about Jonathan Butler’s hunger strike that began this past Monday. The MU graduate student, who is well known on campus for his regular participation in social justice activism is protesting ‘a slew of racist, sexist, homophobic, etc., incidents’ that have taken place at Mizzou recently and what he says is an inadequate response from UM System President Tim Wolfe. As of Wednesday Butler had signed a ‘do not resuscitate’ order and says that he will continue with the strike until Wolfe steps down from office or until he dies of starvation.

The student activist group Concerned Student 1950 has been protesting the same issues alongside Butler and has held numerous marches and rallies in recent weeks. One held on Thursday had students marching across campus and eventually ending up on Carnahan Quad near a group of tents set up and currently occupied by Concerned Student 1950 protestors who are supporting Butler during his strike. This raw footage was captured at that location by an MUTV reporter following this particular protest: https://twitter.com/Dannykons/status/662682619641921536

This video did not need to be edited because its purpose was to show extremely powerful and real emotion that could not have been improved upon had it been cut in any way. In the same way, adding music would have made it seem insincere or contrived. In this case, raw footage is all that was needed to get the point across: students are suffering and changes need to be made, from top administration down, to make MU a more welcoming and safe place for every member.

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