Last month I had been to my office headquarters, and took a taxi to reach the office. It was a typical Bengaluru road with potholes and vehicles in the ratio of 1:2. The vehicle was trudging along and a lady from nowhere, as is the wont on our roads, crossed across the road, compelling the driver to hit the brakes. He apologized to me, and I in turn appreciated his swiftness.
After travelling some distance, he said `Sir, If I had not applied the brake in time, she would have been run over, and the IX News would have reported `Drunk Driver driving at 80kms speed runs over a pedestrian’. He spoke like the reporters in such drama news channels.
I laughed, and could have left it at that but I wanted to play with the driver’s thought process. Though I knew the answer, I ventured to ask `How do you know these minute details? Do you regularly see them?’ He replied in the affirmative, and also asserted that he was an avid viewer of such news channels.
Next I proceeded to ask `Do you believe in what is told on such channels?”. Driver `Not always sir, but it is great fun’.
He was now in my grip, and I decided to deliver the killer punch `would it have been fun for you or for your family members, if you had hit the lady, and the channel telecasted such headlines’. He sheepishly said `no’.
I chided him by saying `When your mistake becomes a headline, you will feel hurt but when someone else’s mistake becomes a headline, it’s fun. If you don’t want such headlines telecast about you one day, stop viewing channels that telecast such headlines’. He went numb for the remaining part of the journey.
The purpose of this blog is not political, and I never write on this contentious subject. This is about commonsense. Why do we believe a channel where the anchor thinks he, and his reporters know everything? Why don’t we stop viewing channels where the anchor plays the judge? Why don’t we question the motives of channels which divert attention from the important news with their sensational, salacious, and trivial breaking news? Is it that an individual’s opinion becomes pristine just because he served in a particular organisation? Why do people give leave to their critical thinking, and believe politicians who speak blatant lies?
As long as we cannot add up one and one, we will continue to be mislead by shady media houses and Machiavellian politicians.