Topic: Politics, Society
I like the media. I listen to my local NPR station and read online news posts from various sources. They are informative and sometimes even entertaining.
But they do have their flaws, especially when it comes to politics. I am going to address a couple of these flaws, because I would like to bring them to the public's attention and see them eradicated.
PART 1: THE PRIMARIES
The Primaries. The time for those who actually still associate themselves with political parties to vote for who they want to vote for later.
(I think the system needs to change, but that's another post for another time.)
Recently, Indiana had their Primary. Of course, much to the nation's disappointment/horror, the Republicans got Donald Trump. He now has no Party rivals.
On the Democrat's side, Bernie Sanders took the lead in that state. (My sources are the entire media network, but you can see some numbers at The New York Times's website.)
Speaking of the entire media network, what do they make of this win? Well, since Sanders is slightly behind Hillary Clinton overall, they don't care about him. Everyone has already assumed Clinton is going to win the Democrat's nomination.
Take a look at the current delegate count at the above New York Times site or at CNN.com. It will likely change in the future, but it gives you an idea for the current situation. Sanders still stands quite a chance.
It is, after all, a race. The leader, or "front runner," can change at any point, especially when the race is fairly close.
Right after Sanders won Indiana, however, the media continued talk like it is a done deal for Clinton to win. They say it is Clinton vs. Trump and rarely even bother to mention Sanders at all, as if he were out for good and we were already in the final elections. Even professional sources that should be fairly reliable, such as NPR, talk this way.
Whether you support Sanders or not, this is not fair to anyone. We are force fed information telling us who is going to win and how things will turn out. This influences who we will vote for (for those who can vote in the Primaries).
In turn, Sanders gets gypped. He loses exposure and votes. When the media ignore him, the public begins for forget he is there because he is not talked about.
Do you want to be forced fed and let the media decide who get nominated?
PART 2: POLITICAL PARTIES
This brings me around to my 2nd point. In a similar way that the media is only discussing Clinton and Trump, they only discuss Republicans and Democrats.
Maybe some of us want other options. Or at least to know about them, because they are indeed out there.
They fall through the cracks, however, and do not stand a chance because no one pays any attention to them.
What about those of us who are Independent and would like to see an Independent become president? Or those who are members of a so-called "third party" and want to know who they can vote for? Those parties don't even get Primary elections, which may be part of the reason the media does not care about them.
Just because these third parties and non-parties are minorities does not mean they do not stand a chance and we do not want to vote for them or know about them. The only reason they do not make it is because we are not aware of them and some people who are aware will not vote for them for the wrong reasons.
Because a majority of the nation believes you have to be a member of the two big parties to win, they do not vote for anyone else. They think no one else stands a chance.
It is that thinking, however, that makes things turn out the way they do, which is not always good. For example, look at Trump. I heard a guy say on NPR he only voted for Trump in the Primaries because he thought he was the only one who could win.
If the majority of the nation stopped thinking this way and voted for who they wanted to, things would turn out very differently. Do you really think you are the only one who likes a certain small party candidate? Think again.
It is, after all, the majority of Americans that thinks this way. So if they stopped, they would make a difference because of their great numbers.
So, media, give us the coverage we want. We need to see some changes and some more options in this country, and your selective coverage is disappointing, as well as wrongfully influential.
- James D. McIntosh Jr.
Ah, winter break. For you. I just graduated, sucka! I don't have to go back to school. I feel so free! I have so much more time! Until I get a job....
Anyway, this is a good, ol' fun time for students from all grades, including college, and even for their families. Recently, however, my wife pointed out to me how the scheduling for college breaks does not make a whole lot of sense. It could be better.
At the school that is now my alma mater, Lindsey Wilson College, students have part of a week off for Thanksgiving break. Of course, some students and professors skip or cancel classes and take most of or the whole week off, so it varies.
After that, there are two weeks of school left, and one of those weeks is finals week, which does not fully count. Many students finish classes within the first two or three days of the school week. Of course, December graduates, like myself, have to stick around for graduation.
What's my point? Well, students and their families like to be together for both Thanksgiving and the various winter break holidays, right? Many students have to travel far to see their families. Also, some people go away on a trip during the holidays, right? But that awkwardly placed two weeks gets in the way of a full experience.
Some students cannot afford to travel twice so close together. And then people cannot travel and see certain other places or people quite when they might want to.
Would it not make sense to start classes two weeks earlier? Rather than starting in the middle of August, colleges could start at the beginning, like the high schools. Then students and their families could get out two weeks earlier and spend all of the holidays wherever they wanted to.
One nice long break from Thanksgiving to some point in January. Doesn't that sound nice?
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Also, if I get my thoughts collected again, my next post may be about the original Star Wars trilogy!
- James D. McIntosh Jr.
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