Red Pill, please: Nothing but the Facts

Remember Lorena Bobbitt? June 23, 1993.

Constant coverage of Bobbitt created a “blue-pill/ red-pill situation for me. Wrestler #1 helped heighten my awareness.

“Something that happened between a man and wife in small-town Virginia should not be more than a passing third-page story in the paper or on the news,” I complained. “Why are we hearing the sordid details every day? And why does everyone have an opinion?”

“It’s because of cable news,” Wrestler #1 said. “There’s not enough real news to fill 24 hours.”

Wrestler #1 was a 21 year-old college student back then. He knew a lot.

He presented me with the red pill: an unpleasant truth. Once I chose the red pill, I could not go back to blissful ignorance.

Close to 30 years later, I channel surf between various cable news outlets searching for real news about COVID-19. Wrestler #1’s words still ring in my ears.

“CDC death toll estimates are twice what they were a month ago,” says an anchor. “What do you make of that?”

Three of four panelists blather on on how to interpret twice as many deaths expected now that States are loosening restrictions. Do we really need that?

I don’t need an interpretation of words I hear come out of Dr. Fauci’s mouth. He’s very clear.

I don’t need an interpretation of words that come out of President Trump’s mouth. I don’t need someone to say, “Well, what he meant is…” or “He obviously has no empathy.” I can hear him and I can see him. I don’t need a panel to help me form an opinion.

Where is Walter Cronkite when I need him? Just give me the facts. Tell me what’s going on, not how it makes you feel.

Give me more Governor Cuomo press conferences with calm status reports and plans forward. Give me more Governor Pritzker logical staged opening plans .

Take some time to explain the facts. For example, tell us the difference between FDA authorizing for emergency use and FDA approval. The first means the article “may be effective,” the other means the article is “shown to be effective.” Then I know why my doctor is not recommending antibody testing for CoCo. Then I know why the COVID-19 tests results are unreliable.

Anyone who’s heard an excuse from a third-grader knows the difference between “maybe” and “yes.”

More facts lead to more understanding. Please, spend more time explaining things.

Tell us what we need to know, not a bunch of stuff that’s irrelevant and only involve a few people.

More opinion leads to confusion and division. Perhaps our growing reliance on opinion opens the door to vast conspiracy theories.

Why is it that so many people, when asked what they think about a subject begin the conversation with, “I feel….” I notice this is especially common among young people who have never know a world without cable news.

Maybe with less focus on opinion and conjecture, there will be fewer people mistaking feelings for facts.

I mean, really, there are actually people who believe the Earth is flat? And, as one spokesperson bragged, “the movement has gone global.” Do they understand the ridiculosity of all of that?

That’s enough of a rant for me today. I’m turning on the radio and listening to BBC Newshour. Nearly opinion-free and I get to hear what’s going on in the rest of the world.

What’s on your rant-meter these days?

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