Saturday, December 10, 2011

I Heard the News Today, Oh Boy

With apologies to John Lennon and the Beatles for the title, I heard two disturbing stories on the local TV news today that reminded me why I like to avoid watching the news. First, a middle school teacher was arrested (and he confessed) for his affair with a teenage student. Second, a toddler who was caught in gang crossfire last week and was in a coma had his plug pulled and died.

For the first story, they showed the school administration performing their due diligence and notifying all the parents by robocall to show that they were on the job protecting their children. Then, the newsman interviewed the teacher's next door neighbors, who were appropriately shocked. I find the latter kind of news reporting unhelpful. Of course the neighbors were surprised. Wouldn't you be?

For the second story, they showed a photo of the cute little boy in happier times (pictured) and the mother displayed the blue baby footprint tattoo she had on her arm to remember her boy.

Now I'm depressed.

It may be selfish, but I'd rather think about the musical I'm going to be playing in next week or my wife's beautiful face or my younger son's gainful employment or the growing company I work for or the nice view from my rear deck. Is it wrong to avoid bad news? Am I putting my head in the sand? What about climate change and the endless wars we seem to be fighting all over the world? What about the various Occupy [your city here] events? What about the scary crop of Republican presidential hopefuls? There are current and historic horrors available to consider every single day.

Meanwhile, according to the weather woman, it's clear and chilly now and will get to about 60 degrees here today. Now that's news I can use.

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