Dengler Domain: Emotion
Playing to your emotion is key. Any director, producer, or creator wants you to care about their content. Emotion is the quickest way to do it. To the news, they always lead with a crime, typically gun violence or murder. If it bleeds, it leads. While annoying to see it every night and how most people do not want to see it, it hooks us because it evokes an emotion inside of us.
For as long as humans have existed, the media has always evoked emotion. For most journalistic enterprises, they provide the facts without the spin, despite what some news organizations might say. The certain news organizations who say this are trying to get your money and sow a little mistrust and confusion.
Unfortunately, due to 24-hour news and the proliferation of social media, evoking emotion in society is in overdrive. This happens because people make money by making you fearful, angry, or whatever emotion they need to get you to keep paying for your content. People would rather be angry than made uncomfortable with facts that might change their worldview. When news organizations which present the facts of a case without spin are not conducive to one’s beliefs, they get bombarded by these social media inflamers who make money playing to people’s emotions and not the facts.
This has led America to feel more partisan than ever. Is this the case? Probably not. We have not had another Civil War. Inflamers on both sides of the political spectrum make money from evoking people’s emotions and want their followers to believe the other side is ruining the country. This is not true. These inflamers exist on television, radio, and social media. One way to spot them is they are only talking about national issues. They do not care about the local issue where you live. They only want to make you angry or fearful about things you are tangentially connected to.
No one is ruining the country besides these inflamers. Like the consolidation in the agriculture industry which has hampered rural America, these inflamers consolidate followers from across the country. These inflamers only care about issues that improve their bottom line. This bottom line is getting more likes and more outraged followers. They care nothing about your actual local issue. For the bigger they get in influence, the smaller the actual news becomes.
Despite their best attempts at ruining America, the United States of America is a beautiful country, and to not fall victim to these grifters is simple. Turn off the television, turn off the radio, turn off your phone, and when you do turn any of those devices on – read local news. Or at least read the news without the spin, and that is tough. Read from multiple different news sources on different sides of the aisle to form an opinion. Does that sound like a lot of work? Yes, but you are helping save the fabric of American society while not letting these inflamers make a quick buck.
When we let these inflamers evoke our emotions, we are taken advantage of. The more attention they get, the less news with actual journalistic ethics gets. When journalism is gone, stories like the Tama County Board of Supervisors are gone and all other stories on local issues. Then the inflamers with a national view fill the void. Leading to a more angry, more fearful America. Nobody should want this outcome.