July 24, 2013
I turned on the news yesterday morning and found that it was just as it was when I went to bed the night before. All royal baby news, all the time. I'm happy for William and Kate, just as I'm happy for the woman I saw in the grocery store last week with her newborn. But I don't care about every detail of their lives. And do we really have to rehash Diana's history?
What's really unnerving about all the hoopla is the more I see it on my television, computer, tablet, and phone, the more I begin to think - maybe I should care. The media is insisting that this is an "Event!" So shouldn't I want to read about it, obsess about it, think about it, talk about it? It's insidious.
Of course this isn't the only case of "created news" or "created hype" recently. If one were to have watched the news during the Casey Anthony trial, one would have thought that Caylee Anthony was the only child to have gone missing and finally be found dead - ever. More than 700,000 children go missing each year (National Center for Missing and Exploited Children). Where were the news reports and concern about all of them?
I can't help but wonder how and why certain stories blow up and become more about entertainment for people who like to slow down at accidents on the highway than they are about actual news. Who decides that we need to hear about the death of one celebrity non-stop for a month, but only hear a small announcement about another? Who chooses to elevate the disappearance and death of one woman over those of thousands of others? Who makes celebrities out of people who do nothing more than appear on reality TV? The better question is, why do mind-numbed people sit in front of their televisions eating it up each day?
Truthfully, I don't care about the royal baby, Casey Anthony, manufactured celebrities, etc. I don't care what their sixth cousin removed has to say, or what the neighbor who lived down the street and grew up with them ten years ago might think. What I do care about is real news.
What would a week with only reports about actual news be like? And what would it be like if those reports only showed up during the morning and evening news, or in newspapers (print and online)? Even better, what if they only updated us when something newsworthy happened in the story? And what if they never, ever speculated about what might be or could be or should be?
Life without the constant barrage of useless noise and speculation, only real news and relevant updates. I could live with that.