In the newspaper today across page four and five there is a double page spread, about the Vatican scandal that revealed a power struggle to succeed the pope. This scandal has been said to shake the very ground on which religion stands. Power struggles? Within the Vatican? The entire world is engulfed in shock, and trauma.
Let’s think about it though. The pope is the head of one of the largest multi national organizations in the world. We are talking about a company that was dealing in staggering amounts of money like $500 Billion in 2001. He has access to all the world leaders and on top of that all he wears a crown and gets to carry a sceptre. So it surprises me when we are shocked that all his underlings are fighting for that position. I would kick scream bite and do whatever to get there. This, coupled with the fact that the man is grey at the temple and looks like he would keel over and die if a mosquito rammed into him at top speed; makes to why it would make perfect sense for the man to have all the people below him fighting for his position.
Page 2 has a large article about how this lady who was accused of having sub standard singing skills and kicked off a reality show vows to be back like an arch nemesis in a bad superhero movie. Next to the article is a large photo of the lady seated and the inset has the man Kenya loves to hate, a judge on the show, claiming that they made the right decision kicking the girl off and further more that the girl sang her song badly.
A small corner on page six, has a short story, couldn’t be more than 600 words. It is hidden and almost inconspicuous. Especially in light of the huge advertisement for said reality show on page 7. The article’s headline is “World Banks Survey Shows Record Decline in Child Deaths in Kenya.” It is a small article about the falling of the infant mortality rate, which just means that standards of healthcare for children in the country is rising and we should applaud ourselves as a society.
No, we shouldn’t.
And here’s why. This is the news. These are newspapers that we are talking about. They sell on the basis of writing what the people want to read. They reflect what is important to us as a society; and it is for that reason that the above facts bother me. In effect what we are saying some obscure people halfway across the world fighting over a sceptre and a lady who was accused of having sub standard singing skills are more important to us as a society than the fact that less of the kids born within the country today are going to die than did 10 years ago.
That just doesn’t sit right with me; in a society where our priorities are this warped we really have to think of what else we are ignoring. What else is being swept under the carpet and hidden to complete obscurity by more important news such as our dear doctor taking a dump, or some political goon having moved from NBG party to NGB. The truth is there is never really anything of importance taking the fore front in the newspapers. I know I said this before here but the fact astounds me everyday. I thus propose that we drop the term news from the newspaper name. We should just change the name to the paper; Or better yet to the “Creative Relatively Accurate Articles Paper.” This might be a bit long so we will just use Crap for short; and if you think about it crap would be a pretty apt name.