The pastor actually seemed irritated that there were no reporters in the church.
“You don’t see The Media covering this,” he said as about a dozen congregants literally took the plunge in their baptisms.
And all I could think was, “Even here?”
No matter where I am or what the situation is, somebody is going to take a gratuitous swipe at The Media. We haven’t reached the point at which everyone is required to wear a mask, but it seems we all have a media-slap quota that we must meet.
Even people in The Media love to pile on, dismissing viewpoints they don’t like as “something The Media wants you to believe.” On the left, they deride the right-wing outlets and websites. On the right, they attack everyone else as “leftist,” “mainstream” or “lamestream.” And that’s especially weird, because it’s pretty clear there is no single “media” with a single slant or a singular focus. “Media” is a plural word for a reason. In this country, we have left wing and right wing, mainstream and niche, online, broadcast, corporate, social…even retired guys who take up blogging for fun.
Within that confused maelstrom of views, The Media is whatever message I don’t like. If I think the message is wrong or the emphasis is misdirected or the timing is bad or my side isn’t supported unconditionally, I’ll blame The Media. If I’m not getting the attention I want, The Media are biased against me. If I’m getting attention that I don’t want, The Media are biased against me. If I’m getting what I want, The Media finally got it right.
Meanwhile, as much as we spit on the Fourth Estate, we rely on The Media for about 90% of what we think we know about this world. I’ve never been to India, never attended a session of Parliament, never rode a rocket…but I know at least something about them from reading the daily news. I’ve never attended a BLM march or a Trump rally, never subscribed to a QAnon site or discussed motivations with anarchists. Over the past several years, it’s become more and more clear to all of us that we live in relative bubbles, restricted to a small social and familial sphere, relying on other sources to flesh out our sense of the world.
We rely on The Media.
I don’t think there’s any other institution that we rely on so intimately and loathe so flippantly as The Media. It might be the one thing that unites people of all faiths, political views, tribes, cities, states and pronouns. We all hate The Media.
Actually, this might be a good thing. Buried somewhere in our universal scorn for the people we depend on so much, hidden in the constant sniping at the people who hired fact checkers before anyone had heard of fact checkers, just maybe there is the kernel of cohesion. Perhaps our disdain for The Media can form the spark of unity this country needs so desperately.
It’s not ideal, I know. It’s not like we can agree that there’s a Covid pandemic or that Joe Biden is the president or that internet dress is gold, not black, but at least we can agree on one thing: We all hate The Media. And if we can all share in the glow of our hatred for just a few moments, maybe we can begin the healing our nation craves so deeply.
It isn’t much, but it’s a start. Join me in shouting, “I hate The Media,” and we can begin the long journey home.
Now that you realize Dad Writes is part of The Media, you’ll absolutely want to cancel your subscription. But you can’t cancel until after you’ve clicked here to subscribe. First things first, my friends.
Who writes this stuff?
Dadwrites oozes from the warped mind of Michael Rosenbaum, an award-winning author who spends most of his time these days as a start-up business mentor, book coach, photographer and, mostly, a grandfather. All views are his alone, largely due to the fact that he can’t find anyone who agrees with him.