Thursday, June 21, 2007

On Getting Distracted

Listening to Sean Hannity, and getting mad, suddenly seemed as absurd as becoming emotionally involved in a sappy movie.
Today, my frustration with Hannity received its satisfaction of vindication. Such arrogance would reveal itself in sophomoric ridicule, I thought as I listened to Hannity mock a stuttering caller/detractor, the way a junior high bully would.
That was that. Hannity is a jerk. I felt better. Until I remembered Sean Hannity couldn't read my mind, couldn't hear my muttered undertones, and, more infuriating, wouldn't be at all crestfallen to find out that I think he is a jerk.
How different am I, pounding on the dash, than a Sopranos addict screaming at the television while the credits roll?
It is times like these that I feel perhaps we were better off before the information age and the new media.
Before talk radio and television, what medium could have possibly incited me to be so upset with a man I've never met? What's worse, I'm a willing participant in the advertising conquest that bankrolls said jerk.
It's a phase, don't worry. I'll get over it.
I'm become somewhat consistently jaded when it comes to having my emotions manipulated by movies.
It's only the completely innocuous scenes that put a lump in my throat. The scenes with the tears, the rain, the sunsets and the saccharine music I only analyze.
By George, nobody is gonna jerk me around.
Until I turn on the radio, under the dubious auspices of being informed.
The truth is, I listen to, well, let's see, I listen to remind myself why I am right in thinking in what I am thinking. I rehash, and reiterate, and regurgitate everything in a perpetual information or misinformation overload.
There is nothing wrong with knowing what is going on. Nor is there anything wrong with combining religion and politics, thank you, Jerry Falwell.
But in feeding my fury over immigration, I start to mirror those I disagree with.
I'm upset because I feel conservative punditry has elevated a chiefly economic issue to a moral imperative.
And I've lost focus.
Blogs notwithstanding, the immigration debate will be resolved, or not, with or without my consent or approval.
Lost souls, however, I can do something about.
Illegal immigration, Hillary Clinton's strident liberalism, Sean Hannity's hubris, border security, national security, Newt Gingrich's fresh new coat of morality, Mitt Romney's Mormonism, Rudy Gulianni's New Yorkness, all topics of concern, but all potential distractions.
No surprise, here. Spiritual concerns are featherweight, and they fly into the air when disturbed by a stiff wind.

1 comment:

Mark M said...

I generally agree with Sean on most issues. However, the heightened level of name-calling in recent months hasn't gone unnoticed. If thousands of people called me every week just to share how much they hate me, I could be a little edgy.

With the apparent disgust I've heard recently on his show with both Republicans and Democrats about unresponsive federal government, I'm surprised we're not hearing the siren song of a third party sung more often. Perhaps 1992 is still too recent a memory.