There’s a newspiece floating around Canada today. I don’t know if it’s made its way to the US yet, but it’s been all over national news here. And it makes me sick, for a number of reasons.
The story involves a killing on a Greyhound bus in Manitoba — a long way from Ontario, where I (and a good portion of Canadians) live. It’s a graphic tale, consisting of a man getting stabbed and then decapitated in a seemingly random act of violence. And the Globe and Mail was all over it — enough so that it was the first thing listed in my e-mail inbox this morning.
The story is greusome. So much so that I’m unwilling to even link to it. To be frank, I didn’t make it all the way through the story. I closed it, and had to apologize to my girlfriend for having snapped at her a bit in so doing. It’s not often that an issue stirs me enough that I shout at her — especially when it has nothing to do with her in the first place.
If you want, search it out. It’s on the front page of the news sites I visit. And I don’t know if other places are covering it so vividly as the Globe and Mail. But I suspect they are. After all, it sells papers and attracts viewers.
And we’re not just talking responsible newscasting. The piece went into moment-by-moment details, blood and gore included. One friend commented (without having seen the story) that it’s sometimes good for the media to keep us aware about these issues. Not this one. It took place far, far away from us, in a random incident that is terribly unlikely to occur to the next person to get on a bus. The man must have been psychopathic. Apparently he was completely calm throughout the incident. I don’t need to worry about him, and it’s hard to copycat psychotic composure. And even if there’s some inconceivable reason why I did need to know about this, there was no reason for them to go into the details they did. Except for the cashflow.
Sick that this kind of thing happens.
Sick that these are more and more frequently occurring.
Sick that the media gives them the attention at all. That seems to motivate them, at least somewhat. After all, there was Mr. “Now I’ll Be Famous” last time we talked about one of these incidences.
Sick that death is glorified, and violence is loved by our culture. Sick that this is considered normal news. Sick that this is the type of thing people mindlessly absorb in the evening, and turn into water cooler conversation the next day at the office.
Sick. Sick. Sick!