Danger and Courage

When is danger really dangerous? Is everything that the Crisis News Network airs imminently life threatening? When a tornado warning is issued, should we all hide in a bunker? Has the ever present pouring of ‘news’ made us hyper aware or momentarily distracted? Have we heard “wolf” one to many times? Is it all just about liability or is the fear mongering about risk mitigation and liability? I am not sure. I have become complacent about the impending catastrophe. I can’t hold onto all the negativity, sensationalism and blaming and still enjoy the beauty and blessings I have in front of me.

A generation ago, we weren’t subjected to the moment by moment repetition of daily events. News was on at suppertime and in the newspaper. We might tune in for an update on the radio at the top of the hour but more likely, we knew that the news could wait. Now broadcasters, journalists, bloggers, posters, tweeters all need to fill their allotted space and competition for a distracted overwhelmed audience is intense. A scary or outrageous headline is thought to attract more retinas and even if they do’t take in the content, their was a click thru that got counted.

Is it all being manufactured so that ratings are measured and advertising dollars collected? It doesn’t really matter whether the news producer is politically right or left the slant changes but the urgency is the same. ” Look at me” ” I need you to look at me” ” I am good” ” Believe me” ” I am telling the truth”

Would it matter to me if I didn’t know what was happening in Britain? Would my world be different if I was unaware of another attack somewhere? Could I function without another absurd remark from a politician? No, No, Yes. I might miss something or many things in the daily news cycle but it will be replaced or repeated ad nauseum if it has any importance.

I consume about 50% of the news I ate when I was suffering from my need to know now addiction and I am none the unwiser for it. I suspect I can wean myself off another 50% and only watch one 30 minute news broadcast and read one or two news magazine articles without jeopardizing my ability to reflect and discuss the “news of the day”

Make Today Remarkable, by reducing the noise,

Coming up on the 100th anniversary of DDay, June 6, we see true danger. 2,500,000 men landing at Omaha Beach France with fair certainty that their lives would end over the next days as they began the liberation march across France. Jumping into the strait and slogging up a beach in the dark facing the uncertain enemy who could be waiting with you in his sights. That is danger and from that danger courage and resolve arose. I wonder as we live in a prefabricated dangerous world if any or many of us would exemplify that same courage. Would we line up to take our place in a line rushing ill equipped into the night to face down true evil?
I am not sure of my own fortitude and doubtful of so many but when faced with incredible odds and extreme circumstances I/we may perform better than I expect.
On that day these were ordinary men from a different time but everyday men nonetheless. They were farmers, carpenters, storekeepers, and labourers and today they were all somehow soldiers. They didn’t know the enemy except from newsreels and recruitment propoganda. They didn’t know the people they were setting out to free from the torment and torture at the hands of the unknown enemy. They certainly didn’t understand the politics of the continent, the geography of the country or the language of the people and yet they trudged up the beach for a cause they held high – liberty.

I haven’t been placed in these circumstances; most of my generation and subsequent American and Canadians haven’t considered the possibility of marching lockstep with comrades into the face of death. For most of us any personal danger we face is of our own devices – lifestyle choices, adventure, or foolhardy escapades give a tiny sense of the ominous weight that was felt that day.

Today we should acknowledge and remember those brave men who stepped into true danger on behalf of an ideal rather than family and country and those who didn’t return home to their families. They were ordinary men marching alongside ordinary men but today they were all soldiers, they were all heroes.

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