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It’s not the media; things are just really messed up

There isn’t a sentence more infuriating to me than, “The media is blowing [insert news story here] out of proportion.”

It’s a statement that is used so often when it shouldn’t be and rarely used when it should.

So when I heard one of my fellow classmates utter these words in my discussion group in regards to coronavirus on our first day of our second round of online classes, I snapped.

Most people say that phrase when something is happening that they wish they could turn off – that they could get away from. Something is being shown to them that they don’t want to see. 

And that’s where my main problem starts.

Yes, I obviously have a bias because I am a journalism major. But I feel like the media is always criticized for not doing enough or, in this case, doing too much.

In a time like this, there are so many issues the media has to cover that genuinely can’t be blown out of proportion, even if it tried.

We find ourselves in a country where the president is denying any sense of scientific fact amidst a global health crisis. A country where no justice is being served when an individual in a position of power abuses said power regardless of occupation. A place that questions the value of Black lives despite the majority of this country being built upon their shoulders. 

How can you hear the stories of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and the countless Black lives lost in America at the hands of police officers and not pause to realize what you’re seeing on the news is actually happening? 

No matter what news organization you tune into, whether it be Fox News or Buzzfeed, Donald Trump is still publicly denouncing mail-in voting during an election cycle where that is quite possibly going to be the only way to vote. 

No one should be murdered by the police. 

Defunding our defense budget to reallocate to other programs does not sound so crazy when you realize we have been defunding higher education for the same reason for years. 

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These are all things that are right in front of us, and to even be mad at the media at all is a true misdirection of anger. 

Be mad at officials, the system and people who aren’t mad at the right people. 

Our president has waged war against the press, but that doesn’t mean we should. 

It is too easy for people to dismiss things happening right in front of them and to blame the people who deliver the news to them.

These are the same people who say they don’t get involved in politics because it doesn’t affect them. And of course they don’t – they benefit from the system. And they’re probably very rich and very white.

If you don’t believe that America is going through its darkest time right now, then wake up. 

We are a laughingstock – a joke. 

It’s not the media’s fault because Trump tells people it is. 

This is an election that decides if America will side with facts. Just plain facts. 

It’s a war against truth.

No one is arguing that news outlets don’t make mistakes, but the biggest mistake we can make as a democracy is failing to trust them over a flaming hot cheeto masquerading as a modern day dictator.