Thursday, December 25, 2014


My mom has been catching me up with the things she's been going through, which seems to mostly involve her opinions about neighbors, family, and her general worries about safety. She's been watching a lot of this channel called "ID," which seems to be primarily crime investigations, crime recreations, and other shows that generally seed distrust in the rest of humanity. My mom recognizes that this channel has not done her any favors, but she keeps watching it anyway.

This has generally made my mom paranoid about criminals, thieves, and murderers, and it's made me start thinking about the effect paranoia has on people.
The ID Channel (which stands for "Investigation Discovery," it turns out) is playing while I type this, and it's currently showing a show that used the words "how well do you know your neighbors? What's hidden behind the white picket fence?" or something to that effect.

I don't know how many of the stories a channel like this shares are actually true. The world is huge, though, and there's certainly no shortage of stories you can find to scare people into hiding in their homes forever.

This channel is basically exactly what people are talking about when they decry the news media for making the world look disproportionately dark and dangerous. In fact, ID seems to be purely this sort of programming, which is kind of sickening to me. I much preferred it when my mom wanted to share The Big Bang Theory with me rather than this.

There are certainly a lot of bad things happening in the world. I won't deny that. However, I believe that there are more positive things going on in the world at any given moment than there are bad things. This may be a naive perspective, and it's certainly based on no specific evidence. However, I would prefer to maintain this hopefully naivety and go about life being productive rather than hiding in my house, afraid of a world that generally means me no harm.

(As a side note, the background music of this program is suspiciously Twin-Peaks-esque.)

It's perhaps likely that I will meet my end thanks to this hopeful naivety. This is acceptable to me.

There's enough in this world to be afraid about as it is: the destruction of our planet through some cosmic force, the destruction of our environment through human activity, professional and creative failure, social rejection, centipedes, etc. I'm not personally interested in hearing about more things I should be afraid of.

That said, I can understand the allure of this sort of programming. In effect, it's kind of like watching constant "based on a true story" horror movies, which is cool if you're into that sort of thrill. I'm not, but it's cool if that's your bag.

It's not mine, though, and I don't think it's doing my mom any favors. I don't think we should ignore the awful things that happen in the world, but rather than dwelling on what happened, I think we should focus on making things better in the future as much as possible.

I apologize if this post is kind of all over the place and incoherent. It's late, and I'm pretty much just moving my fingers across the keyboard until I'm satisfied with the length of this post. Which, I guess, is now. Good night.

No comments:

Post a Comment