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Burying Our Heads In The Sand


By James Donahue

April 2005


I don’t know if anybody else has noticed it, but this old newsman has been aware of the fact that our media outlets have been devoid of the real news for a very long time.


We have been so preoccupied by the media’s constant “milking” of certain events it seems as if there is little, if any information publicized about things that we really need to know about.


Think about it. For nearly a year almost all of our news involved the presidential candidates, their debates, and eventually all of the hoopla linked to the Democratic and then the Republican Party conventions. After the elections, there was the Scott Peterson murder trial. Then came the deadly December 26 earthquake and massive tsunami that swept away thousands of victims from Indonesia west to India.


Even while still flooded with reports from the tsunami disaster, the drama involving the fate of a brain-damaged Florida woman captured our attention. No sooner was Terri Schiavo put to death by a court order then we have the natural death of Pope John Paul II to deal with. This story will be filling the media window for the next few weeks, long after this man’s bones are disposed of, and a successor named.


In the meantime, many of the important events of our time are passing completely unnoticed . . . at least by our media.


We are barely covering the continuing war in Iraq, even though we have our military nearly totally committed in that terrible place where guerilla warfare rages daily and our soldiers are getting picked off one or two at a time.


The media is ignoring the fact that 1,300 leading scientists from 95 countries recently published a detailed assessment of the “state of the world” in which they agreed that the planet’s environment is degrading to a point where human extinction is a very real threat. They also find that global warming appears to be out of control and that no matter what we do, the continual heating of the planet cannot be stopped.


There is almost no word on all of the ways that the Bush Administration is stripping our nation’s legislated environmental controls on business and industry, and preparing to allow oil and gas well drilling in pristine wilderness places that have been protected for years.


Most people in the United States are totally unaware of the growing threat of a war with China over the Taiwan issue. Taiwan is attempting to break away for independence, and China is preparing to take the island back by force. Bush has promised to defend Taiwan if this happens.


Global warming not only is proven real, it is hosting violent weather events that are devastating homes and property and leaving hundreds if not thousands of people dead and maimed in their wake. Also coming at us are a number of new and modified bacteria and viruses fed by the warmer temperatures. Some threaten mankind with killer pandemics.


We have a record number of people out of work in the United States, and even many of those who still have jobs, now lack health insurance and cannot afford adequate health care. The gap between the nation’s poor and the wealthy is growing wider.    


I get the feeling that someone, possibly our elected political leadership and even the sold-out media, are going out of their way to ignore the inevitable. The world is in a very bad mess and our news is being coddled so that the masses are neither aware, nor are they thinking about what is about to come down on our heads.


Thus our nightly news has become an entertainment hour, filled with talking heads and colorful displays of over-dramatized non-news events that become the focal point of the masses.


Like a popular football, basketball or soccer team, the burial of a dead pope and selection of a successor becomes a form of reality drama on our television screens. We can see the dead pope paraded in his fine robes past the camera lens. We watch the facial expressions as a jury hands down the death sentence for Scott Peterson. We hear the wails of the family as members wait for daughter Terri Schiavo to starve to death in her hospice care bed.


All designed to take our minds off the real menace…..the events looming in our own pitiful lives.

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