Cure Addiction To Negative News
By JOHN M. DERBY
November 2, 2017
A friend commented in passing, “We have become addicted
to negative news,” and it stuck like a thorn.
Is this the reason that we watch nine stories on television
— all about crime, shootings, and car accidents —
and rarely do we see a story with a happy ending?
We have noted on the national news that they are now feeling
sorry for us, and usually end with one “warm and fuzzy”
story which makes you smile or laugh.
We have tried to counter all the negative news with our
local “Power of Positive Press,” but we have
a difficult road ahead of us. So many people have turned
away from news.
Our young people look the other way as they seek out entertainment.
They have been numbed by the constant bombardment of negative
news, to the point where they withdraw into their cell phones,
and plug into Facebook where they can pick and chose what
social commentary they want to read about.
On Facebook we see mostly positive news about our families
and their families. Pictures of trips and smiling faces;
babies and weddings are what people want to look at. There
is negative news on social media, however, and when it happens
it can go viral.
We wonder if there is any cure for this addiction to negative
news. Can we stop the news media from pumping this material
directly into our home?
Perhaps someone could invent a TV device which would automatically
sensor the news and switch to music when the car crashes
and shootings start. There are channels on TV which feature
films for the whole family.
Can you remember the last political story which praised
our politicians for doing a good job? No, the two political
parties are like two chained bulldogs staked only feet from
each other and put on television for our amusement.
We are not amused. The happenings in Washington are an insult
to our democracy. Policy is not being made by joint decision
but by refusal to join in deliberation.
And when the battle in Washington is not at the top of the
news, then the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq take center
stage. The media give us a break when hurricanes hit and
wipe out the rest of the negative news.
While our hearts go out to the people who suffer in these
storms, there are occasionally one or two stories of remarkable
heroism or the saving of an animal which takes center stage
and we get a chance to smile or tear up.
Our message of the “Power of Positive Press”
is but a small candle in the darkness crying out to the
media giants who continue this addiction.
“Stop feeding us non-stop negative news. Take the
time to seek out the thousands of stories about the good
deeds which are being done every day and everywhere on this
Stop our addiction, and let us know that there is a better
world out there than is being painted on the easel of life.
Our life, our community, our people are more than this,
better than this.
We want a true picture.