MTV has a new sitcom called “Faking It.” The show is based on two teens faking various things to become popular at school. According to an article in the New York Times, “Karma is the more desperate of the two, and the show opens with her latest scheme, to generate sympathy by pretending to have been blinded by a sudden-onset brain tumor.” Since this is a sitcom, there is little doubt in my mind that the teen’s actions will be the subject of condemnation, rather, the teen’s actions will be portrayed as “funny.” Yes, this did offend me, I find this episode to be incredibly insensitive. Part of the problem is that people have been known to actually fake a brain tumor for pecuniary gain. For example, consider the case in 2012 that led to jail for a woman who faked a brain tumor to gather over $16,000 in donations.
To find humor in something that works to the detriment of brain tumor patients and trivializes brain tumors is unacceptable. My initial thought for a response to this situation is a petition seeking an apology and seeking affirmative action from MTV to provide positive brain tumor awareness. Please sign the petition I’ve started here.