As a travel writer, it's a good idea to travel with an open mind and be objective. It's good to open yourself to new ideas. You don't have to accept them, but be willing to listen to other perspectives. Expand your horizons and go beyond your current beliefs. You never know, you may learn something new!
Christine Garvin, a writer for Brave New Traveler, recently wrote the article "Does Hollywood Influence Your Perception Of Religions Worldwide?" She asked readers, "Does learning about other cultures, faiths, and people firsthand make a person less influenced by Hollywood's interpretation of different religions?" My response was "...it's a scary thought that people look to Hollywood to enlighten them."
Here's an excerpt from Christine's article,
"...Why are people so affected by what Hollywood has to say? It seems to be how many people learn about other religions and cultures: "The entertainment industry does a particularly terrible job depicting other countries and cultures...the people who say "why are you taking this so seriously?" have been brainwashed to the point where they don't see why (making fun of other cultures) is wrong...this has been done so much, that people just overlook it."
Don't look to outsiders such as the Hollywood community to influence your views. Do your own research and come to your own conclusions. Remember, you can't always believe what you hear and read. Try to be a traveler and not a tourist. The difference is that a tourist sees only the facade - that which a [destination/culture/society] wants you to see, whereas a traveler gets to know the destination or culture as it really is, by immersion and education. You can just be a visitor or you can become a student of the world - it's your choice.
When you write an article, make sure that it's based on your opinion. Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion. There is no right or wrong answer. Do your best to push through and see past the "glitz and glam" of Hollywood. Yes, these people may have fame and fortune, but are they really "in-tune" with what is going on in the world. This is just something to think about before you take someone's opinion to heart!