Mark Trahant: Society is being numbed by dumb

"It's easy to think of media as a base proposition, fancy gossip framed as "news." This is even more so in an era where inane sells; "American Idol" is more popular than democracy itself.

Many people blame the media and the Web for this general trend. After all, we give the people what they want, right?

Our society is being numbed by dumb. It's really easy to seal yourself off and be free of intellectual challenge. It's simpler to plug in and listen to your favorite music, watch reality TV or even read discourse that affirms long-held beliefs, rather than taste unknown flavors.

I commute to work surrounded by people disconnected from conversation, plugged into their favorite tunes as a distraction from routine.

I can't blame the Web for this narrative, because our ability to learn from a wider community of ideas is unparalleled in human history.

I am excited by this prospect -- and am eager to take advantage."

Get the Story:
Dumbing down? Don't blame the media (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer 6/17)

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