Monday, January 22, 2007

how much news is too much?

A murder trial begins today in BC Provincial Court. Already we have read and heard details of the lives and disappearances of the women who were killed and the anguish of their families. So far we have not heard much about the life of the accused, Robert Picton, or his family. Soon we will know more than most of us need or want to know.

The trial is predicted to take over a year. It will be in the newspaper, and on radio and TV every day. Journalists from around the world are here report about it.

I have decided to consciously minimize my exposure to the news about this trial. Knowing all of the details of the crimes and the daily court proceedings will not help me be more compassionate. The lives of the women who were killed will still be lost. Their families will still grieve. At the end, maybe justice will be served. I don't know.

I do know that if I soak up the details and envision the horror and sadness of the stories that make up this case, I will be sadder, more discouraged, less optimistic. So I'll skip the pages in the newspaper, tune out the tv and radio, and focus on other things. I know we'll have to talk with this kids about it, so I'll need to have a basic idea of what's going on. I just don't need the salacious details that I know will be the focus of media coverage.

I am not ignoring the awfulness of the crimes, just choosing not to participate in the media frenzy. In the meantime, I will try to keep doing what good I can in the world, to support safety, dignity and care for all people.

question: have you thought about how you will manage your knowledge about this case?

mompoet - sad and determined


Carol said...

I too determinely know very little about it.
It sounds like the media wants it to be like OJ or Michael J.

Pearl said...

Yes, media frenzy is exactly what it is. It's easy to traumatize oneself in all the generated hubbub. It's not an actionable item for me nor for you. I'm setting it aside.

Lynn Valley Girl said...

I'm not going to watch the news for awhile and that's hard for me being such a newshound. But as you said, it won't bring those women back and their families are left to grieve over a horrible crime.