People are lying to you. They are convinced and they are convincing. Calamity. Disaster. Self destruction. A veritable invasion. Compromised values.
The ticker across the bottom of your screen is filled with it. The news at six will discuss a murder, then a fire, then the pastor who touched children. Should there be time remaining, you’ll hear about the news that matters to you, like the weather or traffic or changes in law. Experts will tell you that the next time you breathe exhaled smoke on a sidewalk in Baltimore, you’re guaranteeing a destination in the oncology unit. They’ll let you know that if you watch television, there is without doubt a significant statistical chance that you’re going to eventually bring a gun to school. If there is a slot machine near the mall, then our children will be prostitutes. If you listen to Black Sabbath, you’re probably going to end up drunk and stoned on a sidewalk having peed in your pants. The list goes on.
I can hardly watch the news. Strike that, I don’t watch the news. I don’t want to know how many people were murdered in Baltimore this year, and I find it sad that so many people are finding their 15 minutes of fame reduced to their mugshot on 11:00 news for a few seconds as an anchor impassionately describes the loss of another precious life. I refuse to live in fear that everything I do and everywhere I go is going to end terribly. I’m figuring that out on my own just fine, thanks.
People are already paranoid enough, naturally. I’m surprised people even leave the house after watching Fox News, MSNBC, or whatever for an hour. I think these news programs are gateway drugs to agoraphobia and racism. People begin to think there is nothing right in the world, only wrong. There are no people who agree anymore, only people who debate. There is no peace, only terror.
Well, I’m perfectly aware we’re all going to die. I’m perfectly aware that there are bad, even evil, things at work in the world. And yet, I am not afraid. I do not want to die. I have a mission. However, I am not afraid to die nor am I afraid of the paranoia and stigmas of these broadcasts/the church/my social class. 1 John 4.
I am not afraid to be me in this world, and I’m aware of the risk. I don’t need a news special to tell me. I’m not afraid to love and I’m too busy to hate. I have too much hope to lose sight of joy for long.
I have too much sense to pay much attention to the “news.”