Natural disasters, social justice and political callousness were at the forefront of national headlines last month. Just as quickly as the storms cleared, so too was their coverage erased and replaced by fresher, more controversial news. Now, as the nation continues the post-Maria healing process and initiates recovery from the deadliest mass-shooting of modern U.S. history, it’s essential that we don’t forget about dated problems, even though they disappear from our newsfeeds.
Just because stories on DACA were exchanged for coverage of hurricanes,
the NFL shadowed North Korean tensions and bullets canceled out health care bills, their impacts linger on our lives. Our position in the Upper Penninsula doesn’t insulate us from national trends and tragedies—in our own backyard we’ve recently experienced the premature loss of community members.
There are fellow Wildcats with families and friends enduring the effects of these disasters first-hand. As college students, it’s easy to be distracted by immediate obligations, alternative stresses and individual adversities, but, we’re not isolated from each other, nor from those who exist beyond the screen.
Being thousands of miles away from Puerto Rico and Las Vegas makes it seem like we can’t better the situations in any way. But, as we navigate these crises through social media, let’s utilize networking platforms for their capacity to share perspectives and unite communities to introduce meaningful change. Remember that for those who have undergone these events, their problems aren’t expiring and neither are opportunities for promoting assistance and awareness.
The constant bombardment of content can be suffocating, and sorting through authentic and fake news can be discouraging to understanding national concerns, but some objective issues fall through the filter regardless of their subjective headlines. When we read and communicate opinions reacting to these events, we can’t let our own get in the way of helping those suffering or blind us to the issues that deserve attention.
As we move forward and pick up the pieces, keep in mind that coverage is temporary, but its context is permanent. Prioritize what you post, and share stories that need it the most.