Category Archives: World

Unnecessary Sensationalism

I’ve long since gotten tired of American news, in all media: print, evening news, 24-hr talking heads, etc.  Everything is so sensationalized and marketed to capture the interest of your average disinterested, entertainment-hungry American.

But this is trite; I’m saying nothing new.  I just wanted to preface the following example, which pissed me off this morning because it’s blatantly sensationalized, and utterly unnecessarily.  It’s a story about two “proximity events” near JFK airport, in which two planes came close to their safety margins in terms of distance in air.  Notice that the headline is “2nd near collision,” and yet in the article itself very specifically says: “The [FAA] said it was not classifying either incident as a ‘near collision'” (emphasis added).

I’m not sure how much more hypocritical that could possibly get… and this is not our local paper saying this, it’s the Associated Press’s title.  If you guys are going to make up headlines without reading the articles, why not go the whole nine yards?  I’m thinking: “OMG! Terrorists Nearly Blow Up Planes AGAIN at JFK Airport!”

No, AP, as you state in the article, these were NOT 'near collisions'.

Awry

There’s something awry in the world.

My RSS sidebar widget reports:
183 killed in 4 Baghdad blasts
College gunman disturbed teachers, classmates

It feels like we see the former every day. 183 killed in 4 Baghdad blasts. Did you even react to reading that? Or dismiss it, inconsequential? One hundred eighty-three people. In one day. I don’t know if repeating it in any other form can any further impress the number. People with plans, people with friends, people with families.

But my how much more exciting to talk about these other people with plans, friends, and families. How much more interesting the TV says that their lives are. How much more garish that they were slain while in college. :Gasp: I’m in college… it could have been me! </sarcasm>

What a pointless argument. I don’t mean to play a numbers game, or in any way downplay the events in Virginia, but seriously. The people killed daily in Iraq and other places of violence, unrest, and war around the world are often perfectly innocent people just living their lives. Why, they don’t even have to be in college! They could be sitting in their homes, walking to work, or any number of things that every person on the planet does daily. Why is it so much more shocking to hear of 32 slain by a suicidal gunman than 183 slain by bombs? Why isn’t it more disturbing that we are not shocked to hear of 183 slain by bombs?

Did you even remember the 183 from the start of this post? Or have you already forgotten them, too?