Sunday, July 17, 2016

Narratives and Political Discord

There was another shooting; I decided to go to twitter to see if they had identified the shooter. Was it political? Was it crime related or was it a deranged individual?

There was already a huge number of people spinning the event.

The only information I've gleaned from reports is that the suspect was on the street with body armor and a gun. The suspect shot officers sent to investigate.

As in Dallas, the police immediately went on a search for accomplices, which is what they should do in a mass shooting. This led to thousands of claims of possible conspiracy and political motives. Police should look for accomplices in all such events.

News outlets were clearly rushing to get incomplete articles online; so that they could get the top spot on twitter and google for the story.

But, I am left wondering, why are other people spinning the story when there is insufficient information?

The only real fact on the table is that police officers were shot. I concede that statements supporting the police are clearly in order. I would also concede to those who complain that the police have been made a target by our civil discord.

My guess is that a large number of posts happened because a large number of people are working on political narratives and that we want to take sensational current events and make them part of our narrative.

Quite frankly, this game of creating political narratives is a technique that I was taught in school.

As we all pursue the creation of our political narratives, we are creating false narratives.

I suspect that we will soon know the name of the suspect. This new information will lead to a frenzy of people speculating on motives. People will rush to look up the shooter's twitter account and blog to see what the shooter had to say and spin some more.

But, think about it? of all the people in Baton, this shooter is the one person who I care about least.

So, while we wait for the press release about the shooter's identity, I wish people would stop and look at the way that we've been trained to engage in discourse. For it is the way that we engage in discourse that has led us to such great division and discord.

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