Most of the time I try to avoid the news because, frankly, it is depressing. News, in general, has become an extension of tabloid reporting. Turn on the evening news and sure enough you will get, at the very least, a summary of the "trending" news of the day.
When did this trend begin? When did other people, and their "fake" realities become more important than our own? Why do we stand around the watercooler discussing a 72 hour marriage rather than our own lives and the struggles we face? Why is it so much easier to focus the lens eleswhere than right where we stand?
I have a friend that told me she realized Facebook was becoming an addiction when she began to think about events in her life as Facebook statuses. Should I share this? Will it elicit a lot of responses? What will it say about me? I give her credit for admitting the problem and doing something about it. "Hi, I'm _______ and I'm a Facebook addict. In fact, I'm addicted to all social networking and other people's lives."
I'm a poet by passion and I post my poetry on a few writing websites. Writing is my addiction (and dark chocolate...just saying). However, I would be dishonest if I didn't say when I come home at night I check my email, Facebook and my writing websites - in that order. I thought about deleting my Facebook account, but I do like checking in and seeing what my family/friends/former students are up to. But I will NOT be getting a fancier phone. I realized that fuels the addiction. Just look around the office, the restaurant, the room you're sitting in right now. You know it's true.
Today, at school, the "buzz" was about two high school English teachers at a high school not too, too far from us. One teacher stabbed the other with a screwdriver. Jokes ran amok. As did speculation. All I could think about was what a horrible example those two idiots set for the students in the building. I was mortified and embarrassed, perhaps, especially, because they were English teachers. But once I stopped to think about it some more I realized this was just another example of tabloid journalism. Crappy teachers are making a lot of headlines these days, while the millions of teachers who do their job well (or perhaps extraordinarily well), do not make the headlines.
Should this story have been reported? In fairness, yes. But, let's see what media circus comes from it after the initial report. Kim, Brittney and Lindsay didn't do anything outrageous today, but who knows, maybe tomorrow they will grab the headline, evening news headline and Barbara Walter's most fascinating people again.
Give me a break.