Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Reality Where Is It

The immediacy of communications is causing life to be more stressful. 24-hour cable news, no wonder Ted Turner is a drunk, makes one wonder “Where did all these weird criminals come from?” Twenty years ago there were horrible crimes no doubt but are there more today in absolute terms? There are 30,000 sex offenders living in Florida, it’s amazing that they can be counted, but why are there so many? It makes one think of a pile of cockroaches scattering when the kitchen light is turned on.

A family is murdered and left on the side of the road no more than 50 feet from the traffic whizzing by at 80 miles per hour. They turn out to be Hispanic and no one knows where they came from or who killed them. Are such crimes the product of massive illegal immigration from a country where the culture of death and corruption makes such acts commonplace? The best thing for a person desiring a calmer life is to take the news in small doses, but that is very difficult.

Almost every public place has the cable news or weather channel blaring. Their omnipresence is simply accepted as is the landscaping around the shopping center. What is the news anyway? Is it the empty presidential podium which occupies the screen as the breathless announcer informs the public that the President will soon be there? Or is it another mundane police chase winding its interminable way through Los Angeles, Dallas, Atlanta, or Detroit?

Americans have become television junkies. What is it about American culture that encourages such compulsive behavior? Cocaine, heroin, pot, amphetamines, and cable news are bad habits that are apparently unbreakable. Alcoholism is a universal problem, every country and society has felt its impact, but these other, modern phenomena’s are very different. Their insidious impact has created a society that is inured to crime, war, carnage, incidents whose shock value has been degraded.

To make themselves feel alive, people turn to reality television shows including the bloody Ultimate Fighter series. The medium of television can not live up to its potential until its users live up to theirs. One can subscribe to cable or satellite and have 500 channels of mostly nothing. The purveyors of such drivel are seeking an audience and will continue to experiment with the most sensational lurid programming possible in hopes of selling more ginzu knives.


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Les Publica said...

Where is reality?

You'll never find it!

At least you noticed it was missing from your life, but you won't find it on this blog.