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Poem: “Network News”

In News, Poetry, Politics by Ted Millar

I wrote this poem about a year and a half ago after watching network news cover the manufactured “crisis” over Central American refugees trying to enter the United States attempting to flee the violence they faced in their home countries. Although I respect journalists and the work the media does as our “fourth estate,” I have a real issue with the capitalist corporate ideology posing as “news.” Based on what I was watching, I assumed the news outlets’ objective was not to inform but incite fear. Was I supposed to be afraid of these women, men, and children who had endured unspeakable conditions only to get here and be confronted with racists and supremacists at the border, many of whom later likely voted for Trump? We should swap them for the ones trying to get here to improve their lives, and ours.

     

                  Network News

        According to the media, it's fear
        I should be feeling.  That's the gist I get:
        If ever freedom I hold near and dear,
        I'd better join the herd before we let
        those refugees across our sacred line,
        and all those orphaned children, women, men
        achieve their muted goal and undermine
        our perfect way of life.  It's over then.

        But, call me simple.  I am not afraid.
        It's hateful, armed supremacists that lurk
        among us our nations ought to trade,
        for they're the real threat to honest peace work.

        The aim of corporate news is not the news.
        Sincerity, it seems, is just a ruse.