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Recently, it was announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Predictably, there was outrage. After all, his track record doesn't exactly show him as a champion of human rights. But all that outrage was wasted. Being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize carries about as much weight as being nominated for an MTV Movie Award.
I'm Katherine Curtis and this is a Naked News Commentary.
This year, a record number of people were nominated for the Peace Prize - 259. We won't know who most of them are, because in most cases, those records are kept secret for 50 years. The only reason we know about Putin's nomination is because the nominators essentially turned it into a press opportunity. And it worked brilliantly.
It's not as if there's an elite, Oscars-like Academy doing the nominating, either. Literally Thousands of people are eligible to submit nominations for Anyone to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. Are you a member of a national assembly? Go ahead, nominate your brother. University professor? If you teach social sciences, history, philosophy, law or theology, your drinking buddy could be a Nobel Peace Prize nominee!
The list of those eligible to nominate goes on. Hey, I know a few professors are probably watching this right now. If any of you want to go ahead and nominate Naked News for a Nobel Peace Prize, we'd be honored! You know, for our excellence in non-biased journalism and just plain making the world a better place.
Over the years, there's been no shortage of controversial nominees who had no chance of winning. Here are two real whoppers. Joseph Stalin was nominated TWICE, in 1945 and 1948, and Adolf Hitler was nominated in 1939. Now to be fair, it was apparently intended as a joke by a Swedish member of parliament, and quickly withdrawn. But it proves my point: anyone can be nominated by someone who's just goofin' around.
Winning the prize doesn't always carry much weight, either. The winners are often controversial. Recently, wins by Barack Obama, Jimmy Carter, Al Gore, and the European Union have been met with widespread criticism. Sure, history is full of very deserving winners. Martin Luther King Jr, Nelson Mandela, and the Dalai Lama come to mind. But Mahatma Gandhi, arguably the greatest symbol of peace in the 20th century never won the Nobel Peace Prize. Never. But Yasser Arafat did. Let That sink in for a minute.
So here's an idea - save all the outrage over Putin's nomination. Take all of that energy, and channel it into doing something to actually promote peace yourself. Who knows, you could wind up making a difference and when I become eligible to, I'll nominate you for a Nobel myself. Now back to you, Eila.
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