I have decided that I will no longer watch cable news. None of it.
Ever since Donald Trump has been the center of the American political landscape, his antics, name-calling, insulting, lying and disregard for the feelings, rights, and needs of broad swaths of Americans has dominated the cable news operations.
Instead of giving us real news, cable news programs – on both the left and the right – have inundated us with talk-show segments, talking about the same event in every segment. We have not gotten real news, but rather the opinions of others.
It has been maddening and spiritually and emotionally exhaustive.
The opinions proffered by cable news guests have only served to make people angrier, more cemented in their views, and more intolerant and increasingly violent. The programs have left many, including me, weary and drained.
Emotional opinionating is not helpful. It does not help us to be able to sort out fact from fiction. It makes us angry and as a result, people who flail instead of fight. The administration has done a magnificent job of gaslighting us all, helping us to remain in winless conversations and also to remain ignorant of all else that is happening in this administration.
Hearing people argue is not helpful. As we draw near to the midterm elections, we need to know what is really going on, including the issues driving policy decisions which will affect us long after the current president is gone.
When any individual bullies and lies, as does the head of this administration, the human response is to fight back in kind. But that kind of fighting is ineffective. This administration is masterful at manipulating emotions of people through its vitriol. It is masterful at saying just enough to make the cable news operations report what is being said over and over again, thereby keeping attention from the important changes that are being made.
This administration – including its Congress and now its courts – are leading this nation toward autocratic rule. Those who are presidential sycophants are more interested in showing loyalty to the president rather than doing what they swore to do – to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. They are working to undo all of the gains that hard-working people concerned with justice for all have achieved. And all we can do is listen to people argue about the president’s bullying et al on cable news.
Ella Baker, the Civil Rights leader responsible for the formation and growth of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) said: “we who believe in freedom cannot rest.” We cannot. And neither will we have the strength to fight against bigotry, hatred, economic amorality, Xenophobia, racism, sexism, capitalism, militarism, and so much more if our spirits are weighed down by our immersion in someone else’s drama, being shaped to do just that – demoralize us.
I refuse to allow this spate of time in American history to steal my spirit, not one more day.
There are things that have happened that we will have to fight against, and others that we will have to make the best of. To do that, we need to be spiritually and emotionally strong. Cable news is like a virus that saps the very strength we need.
For me, not another day will I allow myself to walk around in anger. We need strength for this journey, and I choose to nurture my strength, even as I neutralize my weaknesses caused by anger.
I will not allow this administration or its cable news partners to steal my resolve, my energy, my strength and my belief in fairness, justice and the need to fight for both not another day.
A candid observation…