Today I decided to treat myself to a pedicure. I expected it to be relaxing and enjoyable. I guess I should have shelled out the big money for a true spa-experience, but I went to a local business. Once I was in the seat with my feet soaking, the TV, turned to some daytime soap, switched to the next program. Inside Edition.
I don't watch daytime TV and I avoid "news" programs. I can find out what's going on online and then read the facts that appeal to me, leaving the attention-grabbing spin for those who appreciate it. (Does anyone?) They say great minds discuss ideas, mediocre minds discuss events and small minds talk about other people. If this is true, shows like Inside Edition appeal to the lowest common denominator of our species. On a good day, they serve to bring the rest of us down should we be trapped into viewing their inane and sometimes insane programming. On a day like today they may cause irreparable damage as the repercussions of heroizing a killer spread through society.
Yes. Another tragic event at a school. This time it was at a university in San Diego and six sets of parents lost their children to sick, twisted individual looking for attention. And he's getting exactly what he wanted. Inside Edition is giving him that attention, glancing over the names and ages of six murdered kids robbed of a future while spending half-an-hour elaborating on every detail of the killer's life. Talking to parents and school acquaintances. Showing long clips of self-made videos in which the killer talks about all the things he plans to do and why. Somewhere out there, dozens (hundreds?) of angst-filled youths are taking in this notoriety while ideas form in their heads.
There is so much talk about what we should be doing to prevent this kind of thing happening again. Yet each time it happens a media circus ensues sending the message that if one wants attention this is indeed the way to get it. Turning killers into celebrities may be the the lowest form of selling one's soul for ratings. This is far more harmful than any violent cartoon or sexual content we can imagine. In my opinion, the victims in this latest killing spree are on the heads of Inside Edition and programs like it as well as all those who continue to tune in.
For me, personally, I will avoid mid-afternoon pedicures in places with a blaring television. I will continue to seek my information from sources I can control. I will not allow these kinds of programs to bully me with fear-provoking, useless and often harmful information. Today I will spend some extra time in meditation, sending loving energy to the families who lost their children and to those who may be next.