iWitness

iWitness

I turned off the sound

mute evidence

is easier to ignore

if I could turn of the headlines

the bottom of the screen scroll

I would do that

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I don’t look at the images

as closely

when I can’t hear

the inane babbling of announcers

underlining what is flickering

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I don’t want to witness 

this camera-shaped reality

any more than I want to eyewitness 

these events

I can’t look away though

that would be denial

I have to admit these things happen 

are happening

regardless of the spin

that results in 

no one being accountable 

except the victims 

it is clearly their fault

for being where the camera is pointing

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I’m fine with that

as long as the camera

never points at me 

Talking with a friend recently about the effects of covid distancing & isolation it was clear we live in a culture addicted to distraction. It is almost irrelevant what that distraction is, we want entertainment not information. Take the US election situation, the ideal distraction from the covid pandemic. I’m surprised that the votes of those who have died of covid since the U.S. election have not been declared invalid.

I stopped reading the newspaper many years ago & trust me I became less stressed. I have another friend who suffers from insomnia & ends up watching the news to pass the time. When I suggested turning off the news they reacted ‘this is important, I can’t hide my head in the sand.’ They get NO sympathy from me when they complain about not sleeping well. Stress is more appealing to them than sleep.

All news is ‘camera-shaped reality.’ The lens has no consciousness but the the user of the picture can change its meaning without altering a pixel. History is seen through the eyes of the historian, not the context of the actual time, but by the time of the historian. There is so much history lost because it was considered irrelevant, or unsavoury by the historian. All those female impressionist painters considered dilettantes in favour of male real painters. Don’t get me going on the erasure of lgbt facts of famous lives.

The piece reiterates another of my hobby-horses – the blaming of victims. Not to forgive is often perceived as being even more serious than the actual ‘crime.’ Pressing charges becomes seeking revenge as opposed to having some one face the consequences of their act. ‘I’m sorry’ isn’t enough but for some it should be – if they go that far. 

Are you ready for your close-up?

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