The News is the News–Good or Bad, We Need It

Elizabeth Secor

With a few button clicks of a phone, a screen can be filled with the news headlines, and as of late, those headlines seem to be blaring only crises with a few feel-good stories thrown in. These headlines are there to scare us, but not in a bad way. It is there to get a reaction. No, these headlines are meant to shock readers into clicking and absorbing all the information they can. 

This year, 2020, has been full of crises from wildfires to politics and even a worldwide pandemic. This year seems to have been filled with turns and surprises. The only constant has been the news sites faithfully reporting. While sometimes it may seem like the news is blowing things out of portion, they are not, and the past year they have been helping keep everyone up to date on what a hectic year 2020 has been. 

A quick search on CNN’s earliest reporting of the COVID-19 virus shows informational but otherwise not overly concerned articles. Mostly articles that state there is a new virus in China raising concerns, further explanations on the virus as time goes on, and finally transitioning to the more grim headlines we see today. While the titles may seem overly intimidating (some even sounding like they are from a storybook), they all ring true. The articles are not just blown out of proportion stories, but also hold facts to inform the populace. The headlines are worded so grimly in order to grab a reader’s attention, so they feel the urge to learn more because the information is vitally important to spread.

Without the news having spread the information about COVID and the social distancing guidelines, the USA would not have known the proper protocol. The nation got all its information from the news and followed it. This led to a fairly effective shutdown that helped prevent COVID from spreading much further than it has. The news, however, has not only focused on reporting on COVID. They have also given accurate coverage of the wildfires and hurricanes devastating areas of the nation. They help spread the news of evacuations so people can leave and be safe. They also informed the populace that is not directly affected so that more help can be provided.

Yes, the news coverage lately has not been overly happy, but that is the thing the news is not there to hide the bad and only report the good. They are here to report and inform the populace of what they need to know. It is also important to note that bad news has not been the only coverage and that there have been multitudes of feel-good news. They have reported on sweet stories of families coping together during COVID, of a team of firefighters who carry around a Baby Yoda and celebrities who have been reaching out to fans to keep morale up.