Courtney Kidd LCSW

Courtney Kidd LCSW

Social Justice Solutions | Staff Writer
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Is It Apathy Or Fear? Why Are We So Afraid To Find Out?

What part of our lives is ruled by fear? I want to piggy-back off of Michelle’s recent post about apathy and instead of asking why we’re so apathetic, ask why we are so afraid?  Last night I was asked my opinion of why the recent wars in the Middle East did not have news coverage. Why we will hear more about Syria than our own conflicts.  Fast forward and what you had was a discussion on the difference in journalism and spin the media does spanning from WWII-now.  I still couldn’t answer the ‘why’ though.  Why is it that Vietnam had nightly coverage of real footage and today despite the advances in technology we might hear about the war every so often and there’s very believability to it?

Part of the reason I think we’re hearing about Syria now is because of election season.  Like clockwork during elections we will hear about some imminent threat that could undermine the very foundation of the things we hold dear. My gut tells me it has more to do with our judgment.  Vietnam is marked by the public’s negative reaction to our troops upon their return.  Much of that was because the American people did not want to be in that war, did  not understand the reasons and saw the horrors associated with what was going on.  We wouldn’t make that same mistake again.  Our entry into the current wars in the Middle East were questionable.  The events once the war began have been unfortunate and now as it drags on to over a decade our tolerance is gone.  If we received real updates and real knowledge of what is going on, the outcry might prove difficult to ignore.  So instead we hear about Honey-Boo-Boo and the Khardashians marriages and whatever else that means nothing to our lives.  Those who try to tell real stories do so fairly ineffectually in presentation.
We are afraid of what the answers will be if we ask the questions.  What we don’t know won’t hurt us and that holds true on an individual or macro level.  Cognitive dissonance only works until awareness steps in and after that it is impossible for things to go back to the way it was. I refuse to believe that people don’t care, what I believe is that people will go a long way to protect themselves from unpleasantness.


1024px-The_New_York_Times_newsroom_Socialjustice CC BY-NC-SA By Marjory Collins [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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