Distraction: A Weapon in Politics

Diversion is very important to most animal species for survival. For example, there are some birds like the Killdeer that feign injury to distract predators and others like the warblers that appear to be sick, with their wings quivering to make them seem like helpless baby birds, to divert predators from their nesting ground. Once the predators are lured away, they fly off as if nothing happened in the first place.

Image form Ladders

Distraction is the process of diverting the attention of an individual or group from a desired area of focus and thereby blocking or diminishing the reception of desired information. Humans are somewhat similar, they too use the art of distraction to survive, but they use it for their selfish reasons. And no one uses diversion better than politicians. They’ve been using diversion as a tool to disrupt public attention for decades. They use it to silence protests, shape public opinions, gain followers, pass bad laws, etc. The media plays a very important role, in politics. The media plays a key role in influencing the public vote and in shaping democracy. Meia is considered the fourth pillar of democracy because it is supposed to criticize the government for the work it does as a people’s representative. But today, each media house is backed by a political party, and therefore every channel takes the side of one or the other party and scrutinized the other while glorifying whatever their party says or does.

According to journalist Thomas Carlyle “Media is often called the fifth branch of governments, after the Congress, the President, the Supreme Court, and the federal bureaucracy saying that no other institution has such an impact on governments as the media has”. The media controls people so much, that people readily eat up whatever information they feed them. For example, when the sudden nationwide lockdown was declared with a four-hour notice, it led to the worst migrant crisis since India’s partition. And while the media was covering the migrant crisis, they didn’t report it as a result of the disastrous state policies, instead, they somehow managed to portray it as a natural catastrophe or a tragedy and no one even bothered questioning it. The media also used distraction by spreading fake news to stir up and intensify social conflict. They spread stories that are misleading and untrue, causing growing mistrust among all Indians, which have resulted in protests, violence, and incivility many a time.

Unlike the warblers and killdeers that use distraction as a matter of life and death, distraction in politics is a matter of survival: to divert attention to further an ulterior motive. So while the limelight is on positive headlines, it becomes very easy for the media to distract us from all the injustices and wrongdoings that takes place in this country in plain sight.

Contributed by Glynisann Santiago content writer at Mitti Ke Rang

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