How quickly we forget

March 5, 2018

fishwrapperI’m reminded of the old term for newspapers: fishwrappers. The term was used with contempt and implied that wrapping fish was the best use for a newspaper. After all, news has always had a short time span, easily replaced by the next news.

Hardly anyone reads newspapers today and if they do, its an online version. Wrapping fish would be difficult. Still, the term occurred to me when I considered the news over just the past few months.

When I began to write this it had been less then three months since Heather Heyer was killed. Remember her? Hard to remember, maybe?

It’s probably fuzzy because right after we faced the wrath of Harvey, then Irma, Maria and the ongoing drama from the idiotic things the man in the Oval says or tweets. Or has his henchmen say to provide him cover.

Then Harvey Weinstein was exposed and the entire can of sexual harassment worms was finally opened. White supremacists tried to rally. Russia continued laughing at us. Korea held out the threat of a nuclear attack. John Kelly lost his halo (which I never saw, anyway) as he defended Trumps Gold Star lies. Florida children were shot and killed. The Florida legislators ignored the students in the gallery as they refused to take up the idea of gun control.

And the beat went on. And goes on still. Fast and furious.

With so much going on, it’s clearer than ever how short the media’s attention span is. And ours, too.

Today, Heather dies and tomorrow her story is used metaphorically to wrap fish.
Today trump tosses paper towels to Puerto Ricans, tomorrow we’re using the story as kindling for an autumn fire.

Things that infuriate us burn briefly and then, on to the next big headline.

And meanwhile…there’s other stuff we should be paying attention to: bills that have been introduced. Bills that decimate the world as we knew it before a madman moved into the Oval. Because all this stuff is distracting us from how much of what we hold dear is being destroyed.

1. HR 861 Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency
2. HR 610 Vouchers for Public Education
3. HR 899 Terminate the Department of Education
4. HJR 69 Repeal Rule Protecting Wildlife
5. HR 370 Repeal Affordable Care Act
6. HR 354 Defund Planned Parenthood
7. HR 785 National Right to Work (this one ends unions)
8. HR 83 Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Bill
9. HR 147 Criminalizing Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act”)
10. HR 808 Sanctions against Iran

and I could go on. But see, it’s hard for us to pay attention to these things when so much else is going on.

So, here’s what would be helpful:

By all means deal with the news of the day.

fishwrappersBUT. Let’s not get distracted from the stuff that’s being done to destroy the world as we knew it. Let’s not waste time calling names, posting memes or any of the other easy stuff. Let’s do the hard stuff: contact our representatives and let them know that we are not happy with all of the undoing of years of legislative progress. Not. Happy. Mid-term elections are key.

And media, if you’re reading this? Gone are the days when every word uttered by the man in the Oval had to be covered. In fact, your constant coverage of him and his inane tweets only gives him more life. He THRIVES on the attention. Why not leave him alone more than you do? Why not ignore some of his ridiculous histrionics? Deprive his harmful ideas of oxygen.

And to any of you who still support him: I will never understand why.







19 comments on “How quickly we forget
  1. robin rue says:

    I don’t watch the news or read the paper. Too much of it is fake and I don’t know what’s real anymore, so I don’t watch any of it.

  2. PatU says:

    Well said, Carol.

  3. I remember traveling to visit England, back when I was in high school and about 11 years old. I delievered newspapers at the time, and I was shocked to see that they really did use newspapers for fish and chips.

  4. Amber Myers says:

    Yeah, it’s a crazy world we live in. I don’t always understand it either. I do have friends who support him and while I don’t get it, I do respect that we have different opinions. It’s a shame when friendships are ruined over politics.

  5. I stopped watching the news and reading the news online years ago. Who knows what’s real and fake. There is so much tragedy making up the most of it. Who wants to read all that anyway.

  6. Karen Morse says:

    I love the message that you have here. We must do something about what’s going on instead of just letting it pass by the day after.

  7. JEanette says:

    This was well said. I do not read the newspaper and I heard you watch the news because most the time I don’t know what they’re actually saying that is true. I like to hear all the facts and I don’t think the news does a very good job of that anymore.

  8. Tomi c says:

    I agree mid term elections of local and state officials are key to change.

  9. Our Family World says:

    I avoid watching or reading the news. It is so depressing! There are fake news and real news that seems fake. My husband still reads the news and then he gets upset. I told him that it would be better for both of us to just continue to live our lives as normal as possible, respect the laws and ordinances and just be good citizens sans politics.

  10. Pete says:

    I still love to sit down early in the morning and read the paper. Not often like the days of old but, you will never beat the smell of fresh printed newsprint. Generally though, no news for me. It’s gloomy enough out there

  11. Pam Wattenbarger says:

    Wow, I can’t believe all of this has happened in such quick succession. It seems like it has been stretching out for years.

  12. Sarah Bailey says:

    The news really can make things seem so fast paces, some days I read things and think oh my goodness I had forgotten about that, how could I forget about it.

  13. Marysa says:

    News can be very depressing, and I find that it helps to really pick and choose. It is good to be informed about what is going on in the world and not be sidetracked by other issues.

  14. shalzmojo says:

    Its the same scenario out here in INdia as well; I stopped getting newspaper about 8 years back and havent bothered since. News isomething I glean online and not from TV channels which seem vapid and noxious as is! So much fake or short term news abounds that as you rightly said the burn is for a day till we move to the next one!

  15. Never knew Newspapers were called fish wrappers. Indeed the newspaper reading habit which used to be a sort of a morning ritual is on the wane as technology takes over.

  16. We cut the cable to avoid seeing depressing news. I still read newspaper though from time to time.

  17. It is so true. There is one news story after the other, that they tend to just leave our minds oh so quickly. What is the newest latest and worst headline… then focus on that for a minute. So overwhelming and disappointing.

  18. Kita Bryant says:

    I only ever read the paper for the comics. They really are the most dated thing we use today.

  19. Heather says:

    I try my best to avoid the news these days. There are too many sad and scary things happening.

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