Thursday, December 22, 2016
In The Future, We Shall All Be Brian Williams!
There was a tempest about a year and a half ago about Brian Williams, NBC's news anchorman on the NBC Evening News, having made statements about his time in a war zone that were not exactly correct. Eventually Brian Williams lost his job, NBC apparently thinking that his credibility had been compromised and no one would take him seriously... even when he was reading scripts for the TV cameras.
During this time, two other individuals' stories about reports from war zones or riot zones came up: that of Bill O'Reilly of Fox and that of Hillary Clinton. Both had related stories that seemed to be at variance with what had actually been possible in the place and time they were at.
I may be mistaken, but no one seemed to bring up PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome; not even merely how people react after traumatic stress, and personally I think being in a helicopter 2 miles away from where people are shooting rockets at other helicopters, or getting off an airplane and hearing automatic gun fire nearby, or being in a hotel in a foreign city in which a large riot is occurring, to be my definition of traumatic stress.
We are indifferent to how stress affects memory, yet we have mightily striven to change our world into a mill of stress where we are ground between the upper and nether millstones of trauma. So we shall not even recognize our own distress for what it is.
In case you don't know, traumatic stress was a major component in the fall of Ancient Rome. It froze people into social norms that were prisons, it gelled their thoughts into mediocre repetitions of the past, it enslaved them to a state religion that had betrayed its Galilean roots.
We have ignored the stress of people who had the dirty end of the stick during the financial crisis and thereafter, we have ignored the stress of people affected by the Iraq War, we have ignored the stress on those affected by Libya, Syria, and all the other little places we love to destabilize.
Liberals now as well as conservatives are buying guns in record numbers. Our president soon-to-be seems to be on the verge of declaring a Crusade to avenge Berlin's truck terror. And the Wall Street Journal and the Rupert Murdochs of the world want more war, more instability, and more suffering to fight against the disorder caused by stress; they prescribe more trauma to cure trauma!
Soon our Futures will be as corrupted by trauma as the past of our memories are!