Reflections from President Blau: Breaking News

Our monthly blog feature from MSP President, Dr. Diane Blau, discussing what’s on her mind and in her heart regarding MSP and the field of professional psychology. 

President Diane Blau

I have noticed of late that TV news reports constantly begin with “BREAKING NEWS!” flashed across the screen.  Half expecting to hear of a devastating earthquake, tremendous loss of life or declaration of war, I feel a rush of adrenalin and an escalated heartbeat accompanied by fear and dread. Out of habit, I immediately direct my attention to the source only to discover there has been another curious political act or presidential blunder.  Breaking news?

It seems this occurs regularly on every TV channel and is usually followed by a panel of “experts” who provide extensive analysis of the incident of the moment. This allows the audience to abandon their own critical thinking because the experts appear to have all the answers.

Clearly, breaking news is parallel to the story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf.  It has little meaning or relevance and I suspect it is becoming increasingly disregarded. We realize there is no wolf, and if and when one appears, we will not believe it is real. Frankly, we will know soon enough.

I yearn for a balanced view of world events, the opportunity to sort through credible information and data, and to formulate my own perspectives.  It is challenging in today’s polarized and biased atmosphere, where the voice of news is amplified, that as a byproduct, the pulse of life seems to be intensifying.