Even before the Boston Marathon Bombings last week, I’ve been questioning my relationship with media. A study claims that people who keep up with the news regularly are no better for it, and may even experience negative side effects. Super-productive people like Tim Ferris advocate for a low-information diet, that includes limiting Internet, TV and social media time. There are times when I log into my Twitter account and cringe. Times where it seems like a scrolling assault on my senses and emotions: Rape-Rape-Black Women Pain-Rick Ross-Patriarchy-Rape Culture– and now? Bombing Suspects. I logged onto Facebook after the news about the Boston Marathon Bombing and caught my eyes just in time to prevent them from processing the image of marathon runners and bystanders who had their limbs blown off in the bomb’s wake. A few days later, images believed to be that of one of the bombing suspects, dropping a device just feet away from 8-year old Martin Richards, who was one of the three people murdered in the attacks, started circulating on my Twitter and Tumblr feed.
When did things get so real? What I mean is, when did the rush to be first with details, images and irrelevant information about tragedy (I’m looking at you, TMZ) override a sense of compassion, not just for the victims and their loved ones, but for others?
There’s a common desire to protect children from violent and harmful images, hurtful words and general negativity, but why not for adults too? I acknowledge my sensitivity but most people aren’t special agents or Navy Seals. We all have a limit to how much we can process before it starts to affect us.
I reached my limit a long time ago, and I’m owning that. Writing and sharing things that inspire me always helps, and I pledge to do more of that in the coming weeks. This also means that this blog will be light on social analysis for a while.
Amy Poehler knows where I’m coming from. Sometimes it all too much.