TMI

I’ve debated blogging about this for a while, but I have to get it out of my head. That’s how this blog thing works for me so apologies in advance for continuing to be depressing.

I think we live in a world where we know too much. I think the theory is that if we don’t question everything and have access to everything then people, read government, will keep more things from us. I know we have a right to know everything, but there are just some things I don’t want to know. And I’m looking directly at you, Al Roker, you know what you did.

I live in Aurora, Colorado. You used to have to tell people it’s a suburb of Denver, but based on last summer’s movie theater shooting, we don’t have to explain where it is anymore. In fact, when I took Sunshine to visit a college a few weeks ago and they asked where everyone was from, the group got silent when Sunshine said she was from Aurora. Then the tour guide asked her if she knew anyone who was hurt in the theater. We didn’t, thank God.

Last summer the night of the shooting, I was up late and a bulletin came over MSNBC that there was a shooting at a theater in Aurora. There are very few theaters in Aurora. I read what news they knew and then got up early to wake up Sunshine. One of her best friends worked there, but because the midnight showing there was sold out, their manager made the workers who were off go to another theater to watch it, that’s where her friend was.

And I’m not one of those people who knew everyone there or was going to be there or even knew someone who knew someone, you know those people, right? In fact, to be perfectly honest, even though it is located less than three miles from my house, it was never my preferred theater. I’ve been there, of course, but it’s by the mall, which means there were always a lot of teens with little to no adult supervision. I have even been known to call it sketchy in the past, however, I also saw Twilight there…..twice.

I would also never go to a Batman movie. I apologize to all geeks fans out there, but after the Heath Ledger one that was so incredibly violent, it’s just not my thing. And maybe someone can tell me why it’s rated PG-13. Not that it would have stopped anything, I’m just curious. Is it because they only say the F word one time? I just know that in my old age with arthritis in my knees, I’ve gotten very sensitive to violence in movies and on TV. It just seems to have gotten so gratuitous; and if you know me, you know I don’t censor much.

So before I get off track, I was reading an article on MSNBC. It’s not necessarily a preferred news source, they just have an app and I usually read down the headlines. And I do want to know things, but the kind of things I want to know are the things we’ll probably never know. I want to know why, just why. Not that why will “fix” anything or make anything make sense because none of it makes sense; not the theater, not Sandy Hook, not any of it.

The preliminary trial has started and I was reading testimony from the first responder, and while I know he had to be graphic in his testimony of what he saw and the details of the scene, I also know MSNBC had a choice on how graphic to be in their article. My heart broke for any family or friends of the names mentioned and the circumstances in which they were talked about. I wondered how I would feel if those were my family members. Would I want to know every single horrifying detail? Would I want to hear about the very specific and graphic suffering six months later and then have to live with the knowing every single day of my life? I didn’t know anyone and I want to go back to a time when I didn’t know so much.

My friend Heather (holla!) requested a funny blog for the next one and I promise I’ll be back to a tap dancing clown in a few days when I’m out of this funk, but that article has been haunting me all day. And yes, of course, it’s my fault for reading it as it’s your fault for reading this, but do news organizations have any sense of moral obligation….that’s not what I’m trying to say, and I’m not talking about censoring, I’m talking about sensitivity. And again, thank GOD I’m not reading about my family and friends, but it’s someone’s family and friends. That’s someone’s daughter or son that they’re reporting their graphic injury and information.

And that brings me to this. I wrote Monday of this week about my friend who lost her daughter before Christmas. It was in a car accident and it was in the paper. I’m linking to her blog so you can see how she felt when the news outlets reported too much. All Things Soup

Just a tad off track but back to Batman, if you watch Hitchcock you’ll know that Psycho was the scariest movie made at the time. But to watch it now, it doesn’t have that scare factor because we’re desensitized. Where does it stop? The mayor of Detroit said murders were up over the last decade because people had lost respect for life. And while looking for that article, I just clicked on my “trusted” news source only to be inundated with 911 calls I will never hear and a picture of a little girl whose family will never get back, and my heart breaks a little more.

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2 Comments

  1. I can’t remember if I blogged about it then or just ranted incessantly on Twitter or Facebook, but the exact reference I made in my post as to “how would the family feel if that’s where they learned that part” related to the shooting there at the theatre. I remember being angered by the coverage where teenagers are turned into on the spot reporters while still in shock. Anyone is fair game in the fray.
    Did you tell the college you were from Oklahoma City? Following the Aurora reference, if you could throw in a random NYC vacation interrupted in September 2001, the interviewer might have just stamped ADMIT right then and there. Extra points for any vague references to knowing anyone (you do have a couple of people from school involved, no one REALLY paid attention to whether you actually knew them anyway. It’s your 15 seconds of quasi sympathy by proxy…)
    But I digress.
    In our situation, I want to know EVERYTHING…every single detail…in theory. In reality? I need the peace THAT only ignorance can give me right now. I can’t imagine a grand scale tragedy where every new detail uncovered was breaking news. One day mess cycle. That’s what Kayla had. I’m good with that. It was noted as traffic. Someone thought it important. As I’m getting back to the world this week, I realize how lucky we were that there wasn’t something more. “22 year old Ada Woman dies in crash”…no alcohol involved, nothing shocking reported to make it a lead sorry. There was tv coverage, but it was as bland as the paper in general…with that one tidbit that wasn’t needed… But I’m happy there weren’t eye witness reports from the scene. I made the mistake of looking at a picture of the car. Had there been an on the scene view while they worked to extract my kid, I would have probably landed in jail.
    Sorry. Comment turned post. But I think you and I are beyond BEYOND similar minded in a billion ways. The desensitization has become so huge to me. I always say I feel like that old person shaking my finger tsk tsk-ing kids about how that Rock and Roll music is going to make them do the pot one day.
    Hug those girls again.

  2. Kelli Evans

    I enjoyed reading your post. I agree that today we are a society that has become desensitized to the horror, the hurt, and explicit. What I find equally hard to fathom is how parents of adolescents and teenagers are seen as out of touch, old school, and intolerant as we try to protect the purity, innocence, and sensitivity of our children. Just because there are video games, movies and activities that display with callousness the violence, and disregard for respect of humanity, does not mean my children have to have that seared into their conscience. I work in the mental health field and I can give countless stories of deep hurt in people’s lives that is present partially due to being anesthetized by the progressive destruction of their innocence and sensitivity.

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