Why the news has become so hard to watch this year

Samuel Ogali, Courier Staff

I’ve always liked watching the news, whether local or national, like CNN and MSNBC, and like many people, I’ve even been obsessed with the election cycle since 2016. However, this year I have completely detached myself from watching the news for a long period of time and it’s been so refreshing. This year has been one disappointment after another and, like many people in the world, I just needed a break.

Now, even though my major, Multimedia Journalism, pertains to everything that’s taking place in the news, there’s  just so much to the point where I needed to shut it off just to get some semblance of peace and normalcy. Living in a pandemic and literally having the world shutdown was bad enough, but the racial divisions, the hurricanes, the high profile deaths and other catastrophic events that I’m probably missing truly makes me feel like I’m living in a nightmare.

Unfortunately, watching the news, especially cable news like CNN and Fox News, only adds to that stress. After consuming so much of the news, you would think the world was on fire, but after disconnecting from it and actually experiencing everything from the outside, you realize that, yes things aren’t in a good place, but it’s not as bad as the media portrays it to be. The media really does dictate our perceptions on society even if they may not be entirely accurate or even true. Being informed is great, but relying on the news nonstop may not be the best outlet for precise information.

In the beginning of the year, experts on television told us the Coronavirus wasn’t as serious as the flu, and today we’re being required to wear face masks and socially distance. While I understand that the facts that we now know about the virus were completely different than in the beginning of the year, that still shows how the media doesn’t really have all the answers that we, as a society, may assume.

  The year 2020 has been a year of deep reflection and unraveling misunderstandings, whether that be in our healthcare system, race relations and especially what we consume as information. If you turn on the news you’ll probably see the polarization of this disease given the fact that an election is coming up. While that may benefit politicians, that only makes it much more stressful for people who are enduring the hardships of this virus and everything else in the world. This continues to turn more people off and even defy guidelines, such as wearing a mask because of the polarization that’s contracted through this 24/7 news cycle.

If you’re someone who watches the news nonstop and thinks the world’s on the brink of destruction, just turn it off for one moment and actually find out for yourself because you will be very surprised.