As someone who tries to look away from the news that bombards me from every public and private corner, like a train wreck impinging on my better instincts, I catch bits and pieces of the news on a continual basis – kind of like an unwanted stream of consciousness – that I would rather ignore. But I can’t. Trump, of course, is lurking in just about every news corner.
Trump and Russia are two of the most persistent and pernicious news themes today. Trump is mentioned together in nearly every news story on Russia’s meddling in American politics. I don’t think I am speaking out of school to say that Russia’s meddling in American politics is fact. We are beyond that question, aren’t we? But there is more to this story than Trump.
Theatre Photography ID: 151700458 Copyright: SharpShooter
The Harvey Weinstein gale has caused a firestorm on the scale of the natural disasters in California, Montana and Canada, except this is no natural disaster. It is far worse. The dirty little secret is out, but how in the world did this monstrous tornado remain a secret so long?
We get angry with the perpetrators, as we should. We get angry with a culture in which men are emboldened to exploit women and in which those dirty little secrets can be kept dirty little secrets. But there is far more about which we should be angry.
There is a huge disconnect. We cry out for justice when we hear about sexual exploitation and abuse. We rightly condemned it, and we rightly condemn the perpetrators of it, but we have a culture that feeds it. We are the culture that feeds it, because “sex sells”, and we are buying it. We have created a culture that feeds the fire of monsters like Harvey Weinstein.
Our culture is saturated with sex. Continue reading
Donkey Hotey / Flickr
Are we Americans that gullible? Or are we simply unwilling to suspend our penchant to believe everything that affirms our political views? Maybe its a matter of not being able to stop the momentum of our own biases as they carry us down the streams of our own predispositions.
I spent a half hour reading Facebook posts one day following the Comey hearing. The exercise can be summarized by the following article title: Breaking: Comey Hearing Confirms Whatever You Already Wanted To Believe (it’s satire folks).
I feel like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day. Throughout the presidential season, we were certain that our partisan counterparts were trapped in their own echo chambers, while we had an uneasy feeling, burping to the surface at times like the perpetual heartburn we work hard to ignore, that we might be living in our own. Even the most ardent political junkie looked forward to the day when he would sigh in the relief of victory or retreat to lick his wounds in relative peace.
But the peace never came. After a flurry of news and opinions on the scourge of fake news, we have been off to the same race we doggedly followed before. The Comey firing and hearing now is just the latest in the perpetual laps that go round and round.
Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore
If anyone ever thought that we could accept a news story at face value, even one written by a nationally respected news source, those days seem to be over. Not only do we have to be concerned about fake news, we need to be concerned about bias in the media, all media.
Frankly, bias has always existed. The media Mantra of objectively reporting the news has always been an ideal at best. Maybe we are just now throwing off the pretense.
Whatever the case is, reading between the lines has never been more important or, perhaps, more difficult. When it comes to Donald Trump, can we believe anything he says? Can we believe anything the media reports?
These are my thoughts as I read Washington Bureau reporter, Tracy Wilkinson’s and Brian Bennett’s, article: “President Trump Has Backed off Many of His Provocative Foreign Policy Promises “.
I don’t want to live in my own echo chamber, but I fear that most people do. Judging by the things I see on social media, a large number of people hear what they want to hear, see what they want to see and think what they want to think, regardless of the facts.
We all have our own worldviews. Some try to keep an open mind, but all of us see through filters that we have either consciously or unconsciously developed. These worldviews are a visceral part of us. Our identities are closely connected them, whether carefully crafted or inadvertent.
It seems that most of us have hard time seeing past our own worldviews, and I include the media in that generalized statement. I don’t exclude myself from that observation. I have to fight (myself) to maintain even a semblance of an open mind. Continue reading
I recently watched a video a friend posted of women who are Trump supporters talking about the decade old tape that has caused a firestorm of passionate debate. One friend who identified herself as “not a Trump supporter” observed that we seem to choose when we want to respond to these things with outrage. Political morality always has a point, and the point isn’t morality.
How true that is!
Anyone who was an adult in the 1990’s remembers the Monica Lewinsky matter and subsequent allegations from other woman about Bill Clinton’s indiscretions that all took place when he was serving in public office in different capacities. There was outrage then, but the bulk of it came from a different quarter.
That is politics. Continue reading