Focus on the news, not on yourself


As anyone who has been following the news recently knows, the Islamic terrorist group ISIS has been a major focus for the United States. Recently, the U.S. began bombing ISIS and has received help from many other countries including Iran. With all of the commotion surrounding this terrorist group, the common thought should be “what else do we need to do as a country?” Unfortunately, this is not the case.

News organizations from both the right and the left have shifted focus almost entirely on President Obama. It seems that the news has become 10 percent “here is what is happening” and 90 percent “here is how I personally feel about it.”

Of course, there is nothing wrong with seeking professional opinions and expert analysis, but it is ludicrous to have a panel of news anchors that seem to know everything about everything. Too many talking heads simply creates noise and confusion, especially when it is essentially professional complaining.

For situations like this, no abstract examples are needed. No one needs to ask: “Well, what if ISIS somehow found a way to infiltrate the United States and take over the Capitol?” That is thinking infinitely far ahead about an improbable situation.

However, this is not to say that some journalistic opinions can be beneficial. They simply have to have enough respect. In the most famous example, Walter Cronkite stated a negative opinion about the war in Vietnam and changed public opinion about the conflict almost overnight.

Unfortunately, the days of journalists with the respect Cronkite garnered are all but over. If the news is ever going to return to its former glory, the noise needs to be cancelled out. Sensationalism needs to disappear and facts need to once again reign supreme. Until that point, speculation and biased opinion will rule the news.