I try not to read/watch/listen to much news. I know, that makes me sound ignorant. I used to pay a lot of attention to current events and I do like knowing what is going on in the city/country/world I am living in. For the past few years though, I've tried to insulate myself a little. I'm not what many people would classify as an overly sensitive person, but the news really gets to me. Today I watched a few top stories on CTV and CBC and I hate how it all makes me feel. Germany: a young man goes on a shooting rampage and kills 16 (mostly high school students)...including himself. Beijing: the ongoing trial of a 19 year old man who stabbed a 22 year old canadian model to death last year. Darfur, Sudan: a montreal based nurse and an italian doctor working with Doctors without Borders get kidnapped from the compound they were authorized to be working in. Alabama: in a small town of 2000 people a local man writes a "hit list" and kills 10 people before killing himself. Brisbane: a Hong Kong tanker loses tons of oil which devastates 60km of beach. Afghanistan: more canadian soldiers die after being hit by a roadside bomb. Red Deer: a man posing as a police officer abducts and assaults a 16 year old girl. Bangladesh: 72 officers murdered by their men in a mutiny over wage.
And that's just a sample of the overtly horrifying events. This comes nowhere near touching on the political, economic and religious decisions and declarations being made which will act as the root causes of future violence in our communities, to our environment, to the world as a whole.
All of these stories make me afraid. Afraid that I will be caught in gang violence when I walk across the street to have lunch with Patrick. Afraid that I will be abducted while getting into my car in the dark, quiet parking lot after work. Afraid I will be hit by a tired truck driver on highway two on my way home to visit family. Afraid an engine in the plane I'm riding in will malfunction and cause a fatal crash. When I watch/read the news, I am terrified of the world I live in. The problem is, the life I try to and intend to lead requires a significant amount of empowerment, requires a significant amount of faith in humanity, requires a significant amount of courage. And so I walk that careful line of awareness and acknowledgement of all that is frightening in this world, at this moment in time, without being overwhelmed by it.
The Cinematic Orchestra and Sigur Ros help.