By Ben Spielberg
In 2005, A&E’s Intervention took the world by storm. For the first time, the addiction was portrayed more candidly than it ever had been to a mainstream audience. The show featured addicts in the everyday world of their addiction as their families and loved ones try to get them to go to rehab.
I use this television show as an example because it represents an interesting split in both logic and morality. On one hand, the show exposes a side of addiction first hand—people who may not personally know any drug addicts and alcoholics are becoming more knowledgeable about the epidemic. Hopefully this is leading to people to share their knowledge with others, raising the rate of which people go to rehabs, and cease the enablement of their family members.
While this sounds great in theory, there is the fact that most people are watching these types of shows for entertainment purposes; there are many people that are entertained by Allison’s Dust-Off habit but could care less whether or not she goes to treatment afterward.
Intervention spawned some new series’ like Hoarders and My Strange Addiction, as well as A&E’s most recent addition, Relapse. Is it wrong to be entertained by the struggle of other people, or is entertainment actually a method to reinforce education?
- The Fix: A hip recovery site, featuring Courtney Love (salon.com)
- It’s Time for Celeb Rehab to Go Away (newser.com)