Sunday, December 16, 2012

since we are never going to do anything about the guns...

I think the Egyptian Pharaohs had it right.

When a new one came to power, he often ordered that all images of the prior guy be defaced, and his name erased from History for all time.

I would never dream of advocating laws that dictate what Media can say (slippery-slope #1), but perhaps we can all urge the TV and Radio media to STOP spending countless hours, after these events, focusing on the shooter.  The current repetitive amateur psychology never 'explains' what happened, and only demonstrates to like-minded/susceptible young men how they can achieve (perverse) immortality, too.

Over the past couple of days, I did hear a report that one town's local newspaper, after one of these tragedies, made a policy decision that school shootings would NEVER appear on Page 1, and the shooter's name would never be mentioned.

That might help, but I can't honestly imagine the 24/7 TV news business ever adopting a policy that would just make viewers turn to a more-sensational outlet, and that would hurt ratings/revenue, so screw public interest.

...Unless they all agreed, and, come to think of it, thanks to the unprecedented Media Consolidation of the past 20 years, that would only require action by about 6 CEOs.  Hmmmmm.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

on iconic images

We remember the photo of the North Vietnamese POW, an instant before being shot in the head.

We remember the photos of the jet hitting the 2nd WTC tower.

We remember the photo of John and Jackie arriving at the Dallas airport that sunny Friday morning.

Photographs of impending tragedy have an understandable fascination because we know what is about to happen, and our helplessness to prevent it raises an emotion equal parts horror, frustration, and, let's face it, schadenfreude (oh, those sophisticated Germans).

It is happening again, with the photo of the subway guy trying to escape from the onrushing train.  In that blink-of-an-eye (or 'augenblick', again the Germans with the perfect word for 'moment') image, there is the possibility that he'll make it.  That we know he didn't is what turns the image into a perpetually-haunting one.

We observe, we know what is about to happen, and we cannot stop it.

The point here, is that I am nominating this photo as best metaphor for Humanity, in the face of the now-inevitable 2 degrees Celsius average global warming, from carbon that has already been burned.

The train is coming. and, unfortunately, the engineer is actually accelerating, not slowing down.

In this case, weirdly, all of Us (and our children) are both the Engineer and the Scrambler.