Paparazzi politics

Story by Emily Gresbrink

The other day I was scrolling through Google News, catching up on the day’s happenings.  Much to my dismay, it was all about Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, Iowa, GOP, GOP, and GOP.

I stopped scrolling and said to myself: ‘That’s nice, but is there anything else even happening in the United States, or is this GOP presidential nomination race the only thing newsworthy right now?’  I found some Occupy name-a-place-anywhere-in-the-U.S. articles and a few Sandusky-accusation case updates, but that was basically it.

So much for news. It’s not news if I’ve heard it a hundred times, especially that Hermain Cain once was CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, or Michele Bachmann has crazy psycho eyes or Mitt Romney
is Mormon.

Wait, what does any of that have to do with their campaigns? What is their stance on anything?

Maybe it’s because the media likes to highlight the wrong things. And as a journalism student, that makes me almost embarrassed to say that the media I’ll be working for someday are highlighting all the wrong things.

There’s more to life than the GOP race’s pop culture-y aspects, and all of this hullaballoo about it is making me care less and less about the 2012 race altogether — which, mind you, is not good.

Here’s my point: When it comes to political news, it is important to look to the core of what is happening in campaigns and debates rather than the surface level stuff. Even if it’s not the most fascinating thing you’ve ever seen or heard, listen to these candidates. Why? Because it’s the future we’re dealing with.

In no way am I a political science major or minor, and I’m not the smartest politico ever,  but I am a U.S. citizen whose voice matters in elections and political happenings — that’s why I stay informed. But it’s just so hard to find the truth behind the paparazzi our press have become!

Yes, paparazzi. No matter how hilarious they may be, I don’t care about “Imagine There’s No Pizza” and the Michele Bachmann crazy eyes Internet meme if it interrupts my decisions about political party members.

Even the debates — which, I’ll confess, I missed — are hard to follow up on. All I saw were “Watch Rick Perry’s campaign end in 50 seconds” videos.  Can I please see a major-cable-network-commentary-free stream of the debate?

No? Okay. Guess Rick Perry tanked that debate. That’s all I know.

I’m not even being ignorant when it comes to this stuff, friends — I really am trying to look at what the GOP has to say. Heck, I’m even looking for what Obama’s plans are for next year and can’t find those!

Why is political research and media so hard to sort out? If I can’t make informed decisions, I can’t make a decision at all. The last thing I want to do is not contribute to a crucial decision that will affect the U.S. for another four years.

It’s just so hard to find, and what I do find in terms of valuable information is the same. Sometimes I need more in-depth explanations, and not “yes, he agrees” or “no, she disagrees” answers. I need a clearly laid out, non-partisan, “politics for dummies” chart or video. Something user-friendly that can explain what’s happening, you know?

If you know what is happening with either party, please — share with your friends. Make sure that they are making responsible political decisions, regardless of what party they support. Make sure they can see the truth of campaigns behind the over-funded, TMZ our political media has become.



Emily Gresbrink is a junior print journalism major and Sports Editor at The Spectator.