A Daunting Future
‘A Daunting Future’
By Tony DeLorger © 2010
I often worry that my younger children are uninformed, and unaware of what’s going on in the world. When I ask them why they won’t read a paper or watch the news, the message is clear; they don’t want to know what’s going on in the world. Like the song says, ‘there’s a horror movie right there on my TV’ . Unfortunately the kids do know what’s going on, and it’s scaring them half to death. They may not be reading the paper, but they don’t have to; the internet is their connection to one another and the world, and there’s nothing they can’t find out. As much as we’d like to ignore the fact, our children are living in fear, and even though it may not show, it’s having an extraordinary impact on their future.
When you begin to look closely at what’s being broadcast by our media, it’s a shock to realise how much negativity is presented. Ninety-odd per cent of stories report corruption, violence, crime, racism, natural disaster, animal cruelty and the list goes on. This constant barrage of negativity can in no way give a child confidence in a positive future. Ultimately it can disarm and undermine the processes of education and development leading to a productive role in society.
Our youth are in crisis, with truancy, gang violence and alcohol and drug abuse just a few of the problems. We constantly debate who is at fault: parents, educators, socio-economic factors and the like. But we overlook the most basic and damaging cause. What our children see in the world offers no assurance that they have a future at all. Another supporting indicator of this reality is the increase in teenage depression. There is a sense of hopelessness that sits just beneath the surface with many teenagers, and that can have a devastating effect.
Fear is the greatest demotivator and from a societal perspective the one catalyst for negative change. American society is a perfect example of what can happen from a constant barrage of fear from extensive media hammering about racial violence, crime, terrorism, corruption and corporate failure. The fear is so deep-rooted that American society has the most death and injury through guns of anywhere in the world not at war. Just about everyone is armed and paranoid enough to use them. This disaster is something we don’t want in Australia, but unfortunately we’re heading down the same road.
The world has changed, that is undeniable, but the more we just accept this escalation of negative reinforcement, the more we are all responsible for the outcome. Governments and corporations must not be given free reign for fear mongering and manipulation. Fear is a weapon that can be used to control the masses, keep them in line. But true freedom gives voice to the masses, gives us choice about what we are subjected to. I believe that we should stand firm on this issue that is hurting our children. The world is not all doom and gloom and media should be a reflection of that, surely. There must be a balance between real news and what and how it is presented.
We each have the power to change our world, but if we become complacent and accept without question, we have failed ourselves, our children and our future.