The news stopped really accurately telling the “news” a long time ago in favor of stories that draw more viewers and generate more profit. Most people know that, or at least they should. I actually wrote three papers on this topic over a few years in college (totaling 35 pages of research papers). My first paper presented the background on two topics; Mass Media, and the Public Perception. In my second year I further explored the relationship of one on the other and wrote a paper entitled “The Mass Media & its Effects on Public Perceptions.” In my last semester, it was time again for the presidential election 2004. So I added the election into the paper, writing a paper entitled “The Mass Media & its Effects on Public Perceptions of the Electoral Process.” The other day, for the first time since writing these papers four years ago, I saw something that threw me right back into my research. You see it pictured to the to the right. What really struck me about this store window billboard was what it was making the election into. It would seem that the election has become nothing more then a game. It has become more important to sell cups of coffee bearing the name of “your candidate” then it is to choose the right person to run our country for the next four years.
Now, it just so happens that I don’t intend to vote for either one of these mainstream candidates, so seeing these cups portraying only two choices only makes me angrier. I urge people to try and see past the illusion of two choices. While I realize that one of these two candidates will win, I see past this. I think it’s extremely important to consider other options. Most people get their information exclusively form TV, radio, or the internet. All of these sources favor only two choices, and it seems to me, to be driven by ratings. It’s like turning the process by which we elect our government into the equivalent of a baseball game. Think about it, how different is the argument of McCain vs. Obama from The Red Sox vs. The Yankees?