When I moved in with Todd last December I was so excited to be moving into a house that came fully equipped with cable television for the first time since moving out of my parent’s house over a decade ago.
Not only would I be able to watch Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune after dinner every weeknight like the old lady I am, but I would get to enjoy the constant barrage of the 24 hour news cycle during ELECTION SEASON!
And not only would I be able to enjoy election season commentary whenever I wanted, but for the first 10 months it featured the lovely Bernie Sanders, the candidate who stole my heart and will keep it forever until he comes back or someone not quite as good, but hopefully close, comes along.
Of course, then, we know what happened. We got Trumped.
Then it was awful having the news on all the time, but I couldn’t stop watching it.
I would wake up in the morning and turn on MSNBC and have my coffee right along with Joe and Mika on Morning Joe and be riled the fuck up before 9am, consistently.
Then I decided that Joe and Mika weren’t really my people so I moved on to CNN, pushed the news watching back a bit further into my morning and started waking up with AM Joy, who I personally feel is much more pleasant to listen to than Joe or Mika any day.
Any how, no one probably wants to discuss the merits and misfortunes of Joe, Mika, and Joy, so my point is that I am trying to get at is that I started to think that the news was contributing to my depression.
Now, was it really the news necessarily? Now that I really think about it and analyze it, I’m thinking the answer is ‘probably not.’
I always consume news when I can – I actively pursue information all day long, and even if I am not watching it on TV I know I am going to be catching it streaming by me on Facebook or Twitter throughout the day. I can’t hide from the news, and I don’t want to, I don’t want to hide from it at all, quite the opposite – I want to be sure to know when shit starts hitting the fan so I can run to my bunker.
Just kidding I’m too poor to have a bunker, I can only dream.
No, it wasn’t the news itself that was bothering me, it was the way this new administration is very obviously trying to spin the news in gross ways that I have never seen before, grosser even than in Nixon’s time, so I hear.
Now, when I was in high school I strived to get the grades good enough AND the recommendation to get into the Journalism class a year early because I was so interested in writing and I wanted to pursue every medium I could learn, and the Journalism class had the added privilege of being the ones who wrote for the school paper, The Viking Saga.
You know it was my dream to write for The Viking Saga, but that dream got added to the list of dreams that never came to fruition, and do you want to know why? Well, I’ll tell you why:
Because in journalism you have to write the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth so help you won’t be in the paper because that’s what journalists do: they gather facts and they report them back.
Journalists gather facts and report them back.
Journalists don’t gather facts and then use those facts to create stories that seem more interesting.
Journalists don’t gather facts and then present to the public alternative facts.
Quite simply, watching the news started making me extra nervous because I lost my ability to be sure what was true, and it was really making me sick to see so clearly how the media spins things in ways that can’t possibly make sense for the layperson who hasn’t been paying attention for months to understand.
I feel like the vast majority of our citizens are completely in the dark about what is going on now that Trump is president, I don’t think a lot of people really know what it means for us since there is so little civic instruction or involvement in schools.
The whole part of this post (that I started writing last night) is that we canceled cable last week, and so my constant flood of news from the TV has come to an end.
What’s left in its place?
An uncomfortable kind of peace.