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The voices followed me through the airport yesterday afternoon, their insistent tones blaring as loudly as the glaring screens that have colonized nearly every public place in American life. They chased after me offering insider knowledge: "The ...

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Displaying 1–14 of 14 comments

Paul Schryba

December 28, 2012  10:12pm

I find many points in the article I strongly agree with. The first is the focus; the article is not about trying to force the media to change, nor keeping the focus on the media and its wrongs. He challenges us to take responsibility for our actions. He mentions our modern tendency to be addicted mental chatter and our failure to be still, silent- and then to respond in the Spirit from that silence. "How to be silent, how to be truly present, and then how to speak."

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Claire Guest

December 22, 2012  7:14pm

I agree with Rick Dalbey's post below. Laura, I understand your point. It does seem that people have a desperate need to understand the WHY of this tragedy (we've heard this question constantly, from all quarters). The ONLY thing that explains the WHY of ANY tragedy to me is the Word of God, period. I realize that if people don't know the Lord, they don't have access to His POV. In this particular situation, it seems the only people who could have told us anything concrete about Adam Lanza's mindset have died, or else aren't talking (like his dad and brother). It bothers me that a LOT of speculation has been reported (and accepted) as fact. Another major concern for me is the politicizing of this tragedy - one example of this is the listing of TWENTY-SIX victims, not TWENTY-SEVEN. I've seen/heard a lot of this in the MSM media. RE: this article's title - IMHO, True compassion requires intercession.

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December 21, 2012  7:11pm

The comments here show what the real problem with the TV coverage is: we think if we watch, we will "understand". No amount of commentary is going to "make sense" of the story for us. No amount of expert analysis is going to prevent further tragedies. As for "needing to know" the families, the same applies: no amount of tv coverage is going to give me a relationship with them. It merely exploits already suffering people and makes me feel virtuous without cause. I do not watch TV coverage of these "big" stories because they are usually (especially in the beginning) inaccurate and repetitive. The Newtown tragedy is not a TV movie or a reality show, and I will not watch it as if it was.

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Bill Both

December 21, 2012  4:30pm

The author has a point BUT we have to get to know the victims and their families. Otherwise these are just numbers devoid of meaning. I didn't watch ALL of Anderson Cooper's coverage but he did a wonderful interview of Chris and Grace McDonnell about their daughter Grace. It is truly worth a watch:

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Rick Dalbey

December 20, 2012  3:12pm

I agree with Rob the newscaster. Non-stop news coverage only happens when the soul of a nation is touched, when we are faced with implacable evil like 9/11, Newtown or Columbine. It is a desperate attempt to understand the motivations of evil. It is uncomfortable because it re-states God's opinion of fallen man and in that respect moves us all towards needing a savior. It also moves us all towards prayer and comforting one another. These children deserved several days of non-stop coverage, presidential comment, analysis by ministers, psychologists, law enforcement officers and pundits and televised prayer services. The nation needs to share in this kind of grief. If it wearies you turn it off. Simple.

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Rob Vaughn

December 20, 2012  11:02am

I hear you Andy, and I appreciate the other commenters. As a TV news viewer, I agree: the rush of noise, and the torrent of changing "facts," are frustrating and maddening. But as a TV news anchor, I say: this information flow, this window on a shocking event, is what people turn us on for. News, on TV and online, is a 24/7 thing now; people expect a constant flow, especially when "big news" erupts. (Fortunately for me, the school shooting didn't happen here in the Philadelphia TV market, requiring a continuous "wall to wall" coverage response from us.) True, the constant flow is often not too edifying, but if it's edification and wisdom one seeks, the best bet -- as you say -- is to turn it off for a while, and find a quiet place to pray and read the Word. In the constant-news environment, we have to do our best and provide what is wanted. Watch, click it off, and pray.

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Paul Schryba

December 20, 2012  8:15am

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1, KJV "100. The Father spoke one Word, which was his Son, and this Word he speaks always in eternal silence, and in silence must it be heard by the soul." John of the Cross- 'The Collected Works of John of the Cross', trans. Kavanaugh and Rodriguez, ICS Publications, Wash DC 1991 p. 92

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December 19, 2012  5:44pm

Well said, Andy. The irony, of course, is that we live in a society where comparatively few will ever be still long enough people to read this. E'en so Lord Jesus, quickly come!

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December 19, 2012  5:08pm

Could not agree more with J Thomas. The "news" has become a tool to sell and promote products and being so, they are careful not to criticize the hand that feeds them. Ever see a serious news piece about the over-medicating of society, or violence in movies, for example, on a major news network? Probably not, but we'll see plenty of ads for drugs and those very movies. Like Rick said, we want to grapple with what has happened b/c it is so hard to fathom. Even in this day where nothing surprises us, we are stunned. I watched and read because I wanted to know the killer's motive so it could make some kind of sense to me- yet it won't ever because this kind of evil goes against God's very nature, His image, and His heart. So we tweet or post and comment on a status. And we weep with those who weep. And we pray. But that's where it should stop. Becoming voyeurs to the pain and sorrow of these families doesn't do us any good. ...whatever is pure, whatever is lovely...think on those things

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J Thomas

December 19, 2012  4:49pm

Andy is right. Turn off the TV. I quit watching coverage of this days ago. It allows for more sober reflection. We have to understand that these news companies show wall-to-wall superfluous coverage because they want to drive their ratings up so they can sell advertisements. We should turn off the TV more often. It's influence is anti-Christian and has rotted the soul of America. Turn it off.

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Rick Dalbey

December 19, 2012  3:27pm

I disagree with Andy. The press was focused on the tragedy for days because we are dumbfounded. We are stunned by evil as we should be. We need to understand, we need to look for motives, we need to grieve with those who grieve. However, the media conglomerates are complicit in this tragedy. Teenage boys plug in their ear buds and play gruseome murder video games (Media) by the hour, their anthems are gruesome gagsta rap (Media) where murder, violence and rape is celebrated, movie companies (Media) spew out torture-porn films for teens like Saw, earning 887 million dollars for 7 movies, Hostel and others, explicit pornography (Media) is available to any teen 24 hours a day for free. Semi-automatic weapons and pistols ARE legal in Canada though fully automatic weapons are banned. But Adam used a semi-automatic rifle and pistols. We need more than tighter gun laws. After all, he was refused purchase and he stold the guns he used. We need spiritual revival and accontability for the media.

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Susie Q

December 19, 2012  3:17pm

Vara, what caused the incident is not just one thing... we need to be very careful to not take a stand against one thing when there are many causes. Stating absolutes such as "what killed these children was mental illness deliberately caused by violence saturated media..." is dangerous. You do not know these things to be fact, though you state them as so. It is these absolutes, these rigid beliefs, that close ones mind to other possibilities. As for the article: it's ironic, isn't it? What I read here was everyone shut up and stop listening to the media...except me... I get my say, but no one else does. Wrong. It's about time American's really talked about this, and they need to keep talking, and they need to figure it out. Get involved in those discussions, online and elsewhere.

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Brian Moss

December 19, 2012  1:20pm

Andy - Thanks so much for these words today. I resonate with you at every turn. And so we pray to the One who "comes to make His blessings flow far as the curse is found."

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Vara Tamminga

December 19, 2012  12:37pm

Not once in all the non-stop coverage did anyone in the Media mention the poisonous influence of unnecessarily violent media (news, movies, video games) on the American public as a cause of these tragedies. I stopped watching when I realized we were not being told the truth, but instead these murdered babies are being used as propaganda to promote somebody's political agenda. Certainly there should be greater gun control. But what killed these children was mental illness deliberately caused by a violence saturated media targeting American youth. Not one person has accused the media. Why? Why? Who controls them and why is the Globally owned media poisoning the American public with violence, lies, and propaganda? That is the real question and the real crime underlying all of these crimes? The Christian media has a sacred duty to deal with a "criminal" media that not only slanders innocent people, but also promotes violence against our citizens. The TRUTH will set us free.

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