As I was leaving class today, I noticed a large group of people standing around and talking amongst themselves. I also noticed cars stopped in the middle of the parking lot. What in the world has happened? Then I looked at the road. I noticed ambulances, fire trucks, police cars, and two pretty smashed up cars. There had been a wreck directly in front of the campus. I immediately looked, and tried to see if anyone was hurt. The wreck didn't look too bad. As I was walking past this large crowd of people I could hear them talking about the wreck. Apparently some of them saw it happen. I just kept walking, and glancing over at the road. Then I stoppped dead in my tracks. What is wrong with me? What is wrong with us? Why are we watching this whole scene play out? Have we really become this desensitized to violence?
Think about it. When you're on the highway and notice a wreck, you immediately gawk and try to figure out what happened. Concern for the people in the accident is usually secondary. We are bombarded my images of violence each and every day. The News almost glamorizes things like war and devastation. Real tragedy isn't viewed as something negative, it's entertainment for most of us. Whenever there is a major disater in the world, people immediately start thinking of ways to profit from it. Just take a second to think about how many movies and tv shows are about war and natural disasters.
We even buy toys for our children that promote violence. I'm not saying I'm against buying a little boy a G.I. Joe, but I do think children should be better educated about what they're playing with. Many of us played games like War when we were little. You "shot" your friend, they fell down, and died dramatically. Once the game was over, they got up and all was well. Children don't stop to think about the fact that in a real war, when people get shot and fall down, they don't get back up. Adults do the same thing though.
We hear the daily death toll each day on the news. We notice the number, but do we actually stop to think about the lives? Those soldiers are more than just a number, they are someone's son, daughter, wife, husband, brother, sister, friend. They are people. People risking their lives each day, while we sit at home and watch television. We are entertained by this violence on TV, while they are living it.
I'm not a propoent of war or violence. It honestly sickens me. People's lack of concern and sensitivity sickens me more though. I think we should all stop and think about the reality of what's going on around us. The world, unfortunately, is a violent place. This fact wont change unless we all wake up and actually start caring about one another.
So my challenge to you: Today, when you're bombarded by the next wave of violence, actually stop and think about what you're watching.
Lindsey. Twenty-Five. Currently pursuing a degree in Professional Writing & Film Studies.