Hello children, it's Bradley coming to you live from the Capitol! Monday January 14th was the second day of my time in Washington. Today began much like yesterday, we met at The Washington Center early in the morning and had a lecture and three speakers. The lecture was about the recently passed fiscal cliff deal, the debt ceiling issue that needs to be resolved and the sequestration that is set to take effect. These are three big topics that have been dominating politics, and the debt ceiling/sequestration issues will continue to dominate the political world until March when the final decisions will have to be made.
Politicians are going to struggle to reach a bipartisan agreement on these issues due to the ever growing void that separates the right from the left and destroys the careers of those who choose to stay neutral. In today’s political world you have to choose a side and dig deep into your parties trenches. The causes of this split are the media outlets and outcomes of gerrymandering. Gerrymandering has caused a growing shift between politicians of their own caucus. The only threats that some prospective or incumbent representatives have are other politicians who have more radical ideals farther right or farther left, they don’t have to worry about a member of the other caucus in their districts. The fact that media has become more and more accessible and partisan has not helped this problem, and has only aided in making it worse.
The mainstream media has become an evil weapon of politics. It is rare to find a media source that is giving you the entire truth and is a partisan establishment. The mainstream media picks a side and manipulates news so that it is more entertaining, and it is only a click or app download away as well. However this raises a question; who is more to blame, the media or we the consumer? In other words which came first; the chicken, or the egg? Our society clamors for the news that is edgy, that is exciting, that is passionate and in accordance to the views of the individual, when will enough become enough? The answer is never, there is never going to be any difference in the media unless they can be regulated, reduced, or even abolished. Perhaps the abolishment of partisan media outlets should become the abolition movement of the 21st century.
After our morning session I ate a lunch I had packed at The Washington center and we made our way to the Brookings Institute where we attended an interview between Elizabeth Ferris and Frederic Hof with Panos Moumtzis. This was an interesting talk about what is next for Syria. Syria is a Middle Eastern Country experiencing a failure of the state and a civil war. The topic was insightful and sobering seeing how it was mainly focused on humanitarian aspects like displaced people and refugee camps in neighboring countries. It is important to realize no matter how you feel personally or political about this, that there are awful things in the world like little kids who don't make it across the Turkey border with their family. Makes you realize that we may think we have it rough but it could be worse and we are privileged to live in the oldest and greatest democracy in the world.
Until next time children! Bradley signing out.