Is Campaign 2016 Keeping it Real or Keeping it Real Ridiculous?

When did reality television replace reality? In 2000, CBS released the reality show Survivor, and Americans were hooked. Shows like this could be made cheaply and if you were fortunate enough to get a well- known person to participate you could start counting the Benjamins. This is how the Kardashians went from a family to a brand, and how Donald Trump went from being a successful New York realtor to mega-media personality.
Reality television is predicated on drama. The facts and the truth are often missing in action, but the frenetic drama is front and center. Viewers don’t want to be bogged down with issues of integrity or morality? This is almost like having a once a week fantasy. It’s pure escapism. This is not a problem unless this starts to bleed over into real life. Donald Trump’s candidacy has been the beneficiary of reality television. He was discovered there and over the past eight months we have watched him masterfully use the mainstream media tactics he perfected on NBC, The Apprentice. Real people need real solutions with real plans for the future and that seems to be missing in 2016. Recently, President Obama said at the Rutgers University commencement, “In politics and in life, Ignorance is not a virtue,” he said. “It’s not cool to not know what you’re talking about. That’s not keeping it real or telling it like it is. That’s not challenging political correctness. That’s just not knowing what you’re talking about. And yet we’ve become confused about this.” We have always been a nation that conquered challenges. Sought answers to questions. Ignorance was temporal as we pursued truth, but in 2016 we watch crowds clap and affirm meaningless lines from the stump. No one seems to be asking the real question “how”? What are the voters looking for in a candidate? Someone to tap into our fears and exploit them to their advantage, or someone who has plan with real direction? So far all my questions have been about the candidates, but we have to flip the mirror and look ourselves. Have we become more Kardashian than Camelot, more Trump than Obama? Are we witnessing more than another election? Will this simply become the new normal or are we seeing a real change in how we select a leader? This is important and it is up to the voters to decide how they want this to end and that is a reality.

Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.
%d bloggers like this: