The News Tonight.
The distastefulness of the news menu.
I'm not much of a TV person, much less a news person. I never really listen to the news. I can hear my mother's voice ringing in my ears now, "It's good to listen to the news because you never know, they might be coming to get you, and you wouldn't know till you listen to the news" or she would say, "Its good to listen to the news so that you gain insight into what is going on, so that you don't appear to be lacking in knowledge when you find yourself in the midst of people having a lively debate about current affairs. To a point she was right, and is still right. Its nice to know you are able to make a contribution to a discussion about facts and realities that are ongoing.
Well so listen to the news tonight I did. The TV screen came ablaze with the news headlines. At some point I felt like I was listening the chef's special at a restaurant being read out loud. Only this was the news menu, and what I was hearing wasn't about good food that would leave my taste buds oozing juices in anticipation of heavenly flavours, this was a menu that left a bad taste in my mouth. I listened as the lips of the news reader dropped headline of one unpleasant news after the other.
So what was on the breaking news menu tonight? Death, death, death, violence and more violence.
- British Journalist Tim Hetherington dies in lybia. He was an award winning photographer, who died whilst covering the fighting between Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's soldiers and the Lybian rebels. He was killed by mortar fire.
- British female soldier dies in a hospital after she was injured whilst clearing roadside bombs in Afghanistan. Her name was Captain Lisa Jade Head. She was only 29 years old.
- Two British tourists killed in Florida. Shot dead in the early hours of Saturday. They were James Cooper and James Kouzaris, both 25 years and 24 years respectively.
- A family of four died in a car crash when their car was plunged into a reservoir in mid- Wales. There has been an arrest following this incident on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
- A man in Greater Manchester killed his wife in October 2010 and guess what he doesn't remember!
- A woman's dies after being attacked via a webcam in Canada.
- A four year old girl was hit in the face with a brick and suffered as described by the police "horrendous injuries". The brick was smashed through a window of her father's van. in East Lincolnshire.
News source: Sky News
An overdose of death and violence in our society.
Our world today is ridden with so much death and violence. Death and violence caused at the hands of fellow human beings, wars and violence inflicted by human beings, struggling for power, possession and control of social functions and resources.
The adage "love your neighbour as yourself" has lost its meaning in our society today. Respect for human life and basic human values have been washed down the drain. Taking a human life has become akin to slaughtering a chicken for the Sunday's afternoon roast dinner. For those who are brave enough to do it, killing another person is no big deal. Maybe too dramatic in my description, but any death caused by another human is never pleasant, and there happens to be a lot of it in our society today. Death caused because of a mobile phone to mention but the flimpsiest excuse ever imaginable only emphasises the point that there has been an erosion of respect for human life in general.
We kill when we go to war. War is a "glorified" way of killing with a "permissible excuse tag" attached - to get rid of the bad eggs in the society. How can war of any shape or form be acceptable, when it is doing nothing but reducing the size of the young populace, leaving behind widows, widowers and orphans? It also causes social unrest, destruction, fear and an incredibly massive loss of lives.
What has contributed to so much death and violence in our society?
Unacceptable social behaviour stems from what we learn, see and depict from our surroundings as we grow up.
Parents today appear to have limited control over their children for fear of getting into trouble with the law enforcement officers such as the police. We live in a "spare the rod and spoil the child" society.
Unbeknown to a friend of mine, his five year old son called the the UK emergency telephone number 999, because he said his dad had allegedly smacked him. He failed to tell the officers the reason behind his punishment whilst he reported his dad on the phone. The police came to the house, much to the surprise of the parents who obviously wondered what had brought the officers to their residence. They explained the reason why they were there. Thankfully they questioned the boy seperately to find out exactly what had happened and found out that he had been punished for stealing sweets from the fridge when he had specifically been told not to do so. The police left with a warning for the boy instead to behave himself and listen to his parents.
The games to play these days don't help much.We have violent games consuls. Games are meant to entertain and promote fun in a healthy way. What we learn from what we see is visual and can be imprinted in our minds. I don't profess to be an expert in human behaviour, but the more violence we watch and witness, the more we are inclined that way in our actions and way of thinking. We have violent games which people purchase for fun? How can any form of violence ever be fun? You are what you eat and wear, we hear all the time. I say you are what you watch, think and talk because these games are played by taking on the personalities of the characters.
According to gamespot UK in the 10 most violent games listed include (I have only listed two with their descriptions to give you an idea of the level of violence)
- God of war. The Player becomes a ruthless warrior, seeking revenge against the gods who tricked him into murdering his own family. Prisoners are burned alive and player can use 'finishing moves' to kill opponents, like tearing a victim in half.
- Crime Life: Gang Wars. The Player is the leader of a ruthless street gang, spending time fighting, recruiting new gangsters, looting, and of course, more fighting. Player can roam the streets and fight or kill anyone in sight for no apparent reason."
Drug and alcohohl abuse contributes to the increasing levels of violence in our society.There is too much alcohol and drug abuse in our society especially amongst the youth. These contribute to violent behaviour. When these substances are taken in excess they can cause one to lose control of reality as well as their senses and behave in a way which is considered appalling and not acceptable. According to the Staffordshire Police advice zone, figures show that people who drink more heavily are more likely to offend. They are also at an increased risk of being assaulted.
The recent report of drug related violence which led to the deaths of 51 people in Mexico is another reason why drugs is the cause of death and violence in our society today. According to reports its the worst decapitation since August 2008 where 12 people were found beheaded in a crime attributed to the notorious Los Zetas drug cartel.
The movies we watch on TV do not help either. I used to enjoy watching Criminal Minds when I did get round to watching some TV. I have however lost interest as I thought the series were too gruesome. I always think of these Crime based TV series as possibly someone's real life experiences, in terms of the characters that play the officers I mean. I also can't help thinking that television programmes such as Criminal Minds, CSI amongst others can feed criminals with ideas on how to get their next bounty.
Through colourful and adventure themed children's programmes like Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers, which promote heroism through subtle themes of violence, our children get exposed to the notion of fighting, death and violence.
I know I have only sratched the surface of what contributes to violence and death in our society, but addressing it and questioning it is a start.
- AFP: 51 executed in Mexico drug violence
- Binge Drinking: Figures reveal young girls aged 11-15 down as much as boys | Mail Online
A surge in spirits consumption is blamed for creating a generation of binge-drinking schoolgirl 'ladettes', with those who drink knocking back an average 11.3 units per week.
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