Until a few weeks ago I hadn’t been on Facebook for almost 5 years. Until the most recent election, I really didn’t pay much attention to the news. As I wake up today and turn on both I feel like I had created a wonderful imaginary place in my heart, head, and daily life that may not actually exist anymore.
There is a woman’s march which I think had more than a million people participate in it across the US, and world, and the two lasting focal points, it appears from the national news sources that covered it and on my twitter feed, are men. Michael Moore and Van Jones. I say I think there were a million because I have no source for any news that seems to be reliable or consistent. I was at the gym yesterday and saw CNN and Fox news right next to each other and CNN is covering hundreds of thousands of woman marching in dozens of cities and FoxNews is conducting panels to discuss the previous day’s inauguration with no mention of those people flooding the streets. I remember being taught by a reporter about PR and what news folks deem as news. The main criteria was that it was new. The other criteria was that reporters and news programs covered things their viewers would want to see or think was relevant.
I am going to have to assume then, because I doubt I can get an answer from the news director at the national headquarters of Fox News (because, of course, who the hell am I to question things like this with someone in his position), is that the woman’s march, until about 7pm, when they did run a story on it, was not relevant to their viewers. There are other explanations for it, like perhaps they didn’t have reporters on staff to cover it. That can happen. Saturday is usually a slow news day so stations have fewer people on staff. When they did cover it the reporter did not have a professional photographer with him, I don’t think, because the feed coming in was pixelated and seemed to be shot from a mobile phone, maybe.
I watched the first press conference out of the White House for the new administration and witnessed a press secretary that doesn’t seem to tell the truth about things that are easily verifiable. I am confused by this. There are photographs, there are verifiable ways like subway rider numbers, that can disprove what he is saying and yet, he simply tries to create a new truth. I am curious about why this seems to be the main point of a press conference from the White House. It seems strange to me that when you have the world’s attention that the size of crowds is how you use your platform when clearly the point of the event you are referring to had more significance than being about the number of people that showed up.
I read in a Facebook post yesterday, and I think this is my favorite perplexing moment of the day, and remember that I have been in a self-imposed cave for 5 years, that Obama’s children were not at the inauguration, or these folks hadn’t seen any pictures of them there, because for the last 8 years they were rented. Yes, according to a post I read, a string of people can believe that Barack and Michelle Obama’s 2 children weren’t really theirs. They rented them for the last 8 years in order to play a hoax on the American people.
What is happening? I am just so confused.
I have friends that I deeply love that are Republicans. I have family members and friends that are life-long Democrats. I have friends that are gay. I love men. My husband, deeply, and I really dig men in general. I love my girlfriends that stay home with their children and those that rock it hard at work. I have friends that go to church several times a week and others that don’t belong to one. I’m a Gen Xer and find the most excitement, fun, and success from working with Millennials. I have never owned a gun and yet one of my dearest and closed friends on the planet published the first coloring book filled with them. I find the perspective and ability that African American woman have to laugh and love extraordinary and seek the company of my friends that are like that frequently.
Five years ago, before I went into my virtual cave, I felt comfortable loving and supporting all of the people in my life. As I wake up today, though, it is becoming very clear that there are deep lines between people that I dare not step on. I dare not be curious about.
I am beginning to have this fear that if I even question things that appear to be obvious that I will loose friends, clients, and relationships with loved ones. That fear is rooted in the knowing that I am innately curious. I am motivated by a lust to learn and build businesses. I now seem to be torn between finding a place I can trust to get reliable information and how to interact with business associates that are not motivated by the same things I am.
Have people inherently changed that much in 5 years? Is what they want completely different than it used to be? Has what I have been believing about people inaccurate – that most of us, when we meet together over coffee and share our deepest desires for ourselves and our loved ones, are similar? Is it no longer possible to discover the common ground that connects us rather than divides us?
In all of what I am witnessing it appears that curiosity is fading fast. Mentioning that the speeches from a couple of men were the memorable focal points of a woman’s march, and, of course, the pure size of the crowds, to some would create an angry response about how the media sucks. Bringing up that numbers are numbers and that the inauguration didn’t pull the same crowds as previous ones may spark a conversation about how the media sucks and that they are not covering the real issues.
Maybe both sides are right and the media does suck and that’s what everyone thinks. Well, that puts me in an interesting situation since I am a commentator on the local news a couple of times a week. Do I suck? Well, I’ve been wondering about that myself.
I am just so damn curious about all of this. I have to be. I have to remain in that state of mind. I need to try and figure out where I can bring value in this brave new world I have suddenly emerged into. I want to find out where I fit. Who I fit with if I am going to stay engaged on-line.
It’s highly possible, though, that coming up to the surface and peaking around for a moment may be just that. I guess it will depend on the price I am willing to pay for my curiosity.