IS MEDIA PULLING THE TRIGGER?
Back around 21 B.C, a guy named Marshall Mcluhan wrote a book on media titled, “The Media Is The Massage”.
Simply put, Mcluhan theorized that products delivered by the media, news, consumer goods, and information appealed more to human senses than the content did. That is, the media was massaging the senses, exciting the emotions. Was he right? Is the media massaging our senses and if it so, could it be responsible for many of the shootings taking place in our culture today?
Let’s say stories about TSA agents being killed, or kids gunned down in schools, we’re reported locally and not nationally. Would the number of disturbed people considering taking the lives of others, for whatever reason, be reduced if the story was local or regional instead of national?
No one knows. Everything that happens in the world today makes it into the news. From destructive floods in Europe to violence in the streets of our own country, media has blown everything out of proportion, far more than Mcluhan could ever have imagined. Because of our 24 hour, 7 day a week news cycle, we’re engulfed emotionally in every twist and turn of the stories. One cannot help but be affected by them.
The more shootings, the more that follow, as as if one deadly act inspired another. Unfortunately, there is nothing we can do about it. The information is out there, massaging all of us, most of whom are reasonable individuals, uninspired by reports of random violence while there are those who’s senses may react differently, who may feel violence is an invitation for them to pursue their own delusional notions of revenge and carnage, to act upon those impulses, to become part of the massage, to become another entry in our sordid global library of infamy.