Apr 21, 2013 at 7:04 pm #1302019Apr 21, 2013 at 7:53 pm #1979170
…Apr 21, 2013 at 8:53 pm #1979184
@eugeneiusLocale: Nuevo Mexico
"Why does America lose its head over 'terror' but ignore its daily gun deaths?"
Because the media tells them to. The incident in Boston has been a complete media cluster f$%k.Apr 21, 2013 at 9:01 pm #1979188
The daily gun deaths in this country are largely driven by socio-economics. If you want to get to the bottom of this, you'd better be prepared for a really hard discussion about your own society and how it is failing people. Apparently, that's not what our "news" is for.
Terror attacks are driven by ideology in opposition to the dominant culture. It's therefor easy and more convenient write the perpetrator off as an outsider, as an extremist or fanatic, whether they come from abroad or are homegrown.
As opposed to forcing us to take a hard look in the mirror, being attacked by the "outsider" allows us to set aside differences and rally together against what's perceived to be a common enemy.Apr 21, 2013 at 9:27 pm #1979192
I'm not convinced anyone "Lost their heads." The media didn't lose their heads (at least no more so then they normally do). The media reports on events that are unique and dramatic not routine. 24/7 coverage of a big story is expected
I don't think we as American's lost our heads. There was random act of violence where we didn't expect one and the potential for more violence at equally random places. It was natural for people to be interested in the story.
I don't think officials lost their heads. There was a bombing and a firefight with individuals who where thought to have military style training. They had a good idea where the suspect was so the locked the area down to facilitate a man hunt. Maybe they overreacted by locking down too large an area, but your average fugitive doesn't have bombs or a desire to kill large numbers of people randomly.Apr 21, 2013 at 9:28 pm #1979193
@saparisorLocale: Pacific Northwest
That was nicely said, Craig.Apr 21, 2013 at 10:01 pm #1979204
>>24/7 coverage of a big story is expected
And why is that? How much wrong information was disseminated and how many thousands of times were the same handful of facts repeated b/c nothing new was available? Information drives our society. What we choose to do with it when something bad happens is a reflection of us. Repeat something often enough and people believe it. 24/7 coverage of scary, violent acts undoubtedly shapes how we view each other. I think we lost our heads a long time ago and the state of hypervigilance and fear is the new normal.Apr 21, 2013 at 10:13 pm #1979206
@justin_bakerLocale: Santa Rosa, CA
Why does it matter how many gun deaths we have? Is there something about gun deaths that make them particularly horrendous? Why not cite all murders instead of just gun murders?Apr 21, 2013 at 10:17 pm #1979207
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
well said Luke and Craig
Boston is rare so it's news
Low socio-economic areas that have lots of gun violence aren't newsApr 21, 2013 at 10:23 pm #1979208
Jerry did two of us just agree? I must be dreaming:)Apr 21, 2013 at 10:24 pm #1979210
Except on very rare occasions, I don't watch any of the major news networks as I find them to be a sub par source of information. I believe that the U.S. has the news we deserve because we'd rather be entertained than informed. I'm not a self-loathing American but watch any of the Hannity/Olberman personalities on TV and it's hard to believe otherwise (yes I'm aware that Keith has moved on to greener pastures.)
If I turn on any of the cable news channels, I expect stories of less significance to be recirculated throughout the day as that is what they've always delivered in the past. I didn't see that this was televised any worse or better than Columbine, Sandy Hook, Iran Hostage Crisis, etc.
As far as gun violence goes, I think its just a simple matter that we've been desensitized to it. It will be a sad day when a terrorist bombing in the U.S. isn't newsworthy.Apr 21, 2013 at 10:27 pm #1979213
"Why does America lose its head over 'terror' but ignore its daily CAR deaths?"
Which are way more than gun deaths. Not even taking into account the air pollution that contributes to many more deaths.Apr 21, 2013 at 10:35 pm #1979214
I lived without a TV for two years and am currently in a house with a TV. It's impossible to watch anymore. Inane. Infuriating. I get my news from the internet (with adblock) but I realize I'm privileged to be able to do so. Not everyone has time to read in-depth articles and check sources and whatnot. For a lot of people TV news is the only source that's practical to access. I don't think it's what they deserve; everyone deserves better.Apr 21, 2013 at 10:36 pm #1979216
Edit speaking of poor news anybody else think this article could be written better?
Seems like lots of oversimplification and false equivalences. His argument is basically "America freaked out over Boston but didn't pass gun laws after Newtown, therefore America has misplaced priorities."
Maybe our priorities are wrong, or maybe there is a difference between reforming guns laws AND mental health laws, AND privacy laws and a mayor making a snap decision in the middle of a crisis?Apr 21, 2013 at 11:05 pm #1979223
"I don't think it's what they deserve; everyone deserves better."
Ethically I agree with you. I believe that journalists should be held to a high standard. The problem is that every time someone tunes in to a politically biased screaming match vs a program with anything resembling journalistic integrity, FOX/NBC/CNN/etc takes notice. I see this as a consumer driven industry.Apr 21, 2013 at 11:18 pm #1979227
I have to disagree with you somewhat. Visual media marketing leans heavily on innate emotional tendencies. Our brains crave stimulation and watching a pundit cage match pushes those buttons way more than simple reporting. The people running the stations know this is a reliable way to raise ratings and they have to win that game to be profitable. Sensationalism in journalism has been around a long time, but I think it's only since the cable news era that it's gotten so ubiquitous it's become synonymous with what people think of as "news."Apr 21, 2013 at 11:24 pm #1979228
@jephotoLocale: New Zealand
Could this please be moved to chaff?Apr 22, 2013 at 3:36 am #1979239
I thought about putting it there, except that Chaff has functionally ceased to exist.
Plus, this is "On the Web."Apr 22, 2013 at 4:03 am #1979241
>Boston is rare so it's news
>Low socio-economic areas that have lots of gun violence aren't news
I think that's the author's point. Why do we essentially as a society not give a Fu&k about certain things?
Yes, there are many more car deaths than gun deaths. It's the tool and the way it is used which makes the gun deaths more a hot-button issue. If someone accidentally pulls out in front of somebody at an intersection or hits a patch of ice going 70 MPH, any injury or death is greatly tragic. Same as those stories of a true gun accident. But those deaths imply something different about our society than when a kid walks into a school and blows away 20 other kids. In both cases, loss of life is terrible, but if you look at the REASONS behind each instance, very different pictures emerge. Death from a terrorist bombing is much closer in INTENT to gun violence than it is to traffic accidents.
And if measures can be taken to decrease traffic deaths and increase safety, then I'm all for that. Oh, wait. Isn't that big government putting its nose in our business and taking away more of our rights?Apr 22, 2013 at 5:44 am #1979250
@jamesdmarcoLocale: Finger Lakes
Not in MY backyard.
Let everyone have guns, and let criminals beware. The mailman better watch out… Bringing ME bills…errrghhh.
Religious/ethnic disputes are responsible for more violence than anything else. Maybe we should outlaw religious and ethnic groups?
If we were to surrender to the Islamic Jihad, who would we surrender to?Apr 22, 2013 at 5:45 am #1979251
I live in a small town of about 50,000. In the last month we have lost 2 good men, one of whom was a good friend of mine. Both of these deaths speak much louder to the need for some gun rules than Newtown or the recent Boston terrorism. But I have not heard anyone here even make a connection between these incidents and the need for some rules regarding guns.Apr 22, 2013 at 6:52 am #1979265
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
It's interesting that most people at least want more background checks, but special interests make most politicians against this.
We need to eliminate special interest influence of our government.
Yet gun control seems to be very ineffective.
For these publicized incidents, in most cases the perpetrators talk about it before hand so if people just knew what to look for and communicated to the authorities, maybe most of them could be prevented
For the 1000s of gun deaths, maybe make education cheaper?
Maybe all males should be locked up from age 18 to 28 or so? No, that's not practical.Apr 22, 2013 at 7:01 am #1979270
"The people running the stations know this is a reliable way to raise ratings and they have to win that game to be profitable. Sensationalism in journalism has been around a long time, but I think it's only since the cable news era that it's gotten so ubiquitous it's become synonymous with what people think of as "news.""
I'd attribute it more to when networks decided that the news had to be profitable. That wasn't the case in the 'golden days' of news. When you have to be profitable, you have to pander.Apr 22, 2013 at 7:15 am #1979276
"Edit speaking of poor news anybody else think this article could be written better?"
It's not an 'article,' per se, it's a commentary. But I agree with the oversimplification and false equivalences, and just flat out making stuff up.Apr 22, 2013 at 7:53 am #1979288
500+ people killed daily by hospital / doctor errors. Why don't we go for the greater good, and focus on that?
And gun control might get farther if it didn't focus on punishing the law-abiding. Although a large portion of the US thinks it is possible to legislate crazy.
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