Feb 3, 2011
Nearly a decade after the 9/11 attacks, the media’s continual silence on the worldwide grassroots campaign to launch a new investigation into those attacks demands an explanation that is different from the criticism that we usually hear from 9/11 truth activists, a lot of which fails to address the feelings of shame and guilt in journalists and reporters about not exposing the destructive lies earlier, knowing that if they had done so they could have potentially stopped two criminal wars in the Middle East that have caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people.
Journalists, like doctors and soldiers and members of other professions that serve the public, take their jobs seriously, so much so that they put their lives on the line to get the truth out about certain situations and events, which explains why many of them feel shame and guilt when they find out that the narrative they’ve repeated for so long – that Al Qaeda attacked America on 9/11 – is actually false.
Their pride is wounded, and their conscience is rocked by such shocking information, and who can blame them? They are human, and failure is part of being human. Because journalists are trusted to keep the public informed and knowledgeable about our world and the activities of our governments, when they fail so catastrophically, as they have in regards to the 9/11 issue, it is natural that their response is denial, and mockery. They can’t face the public because of the shame and guilt they feel, so it falls upon the public, especially 9/11 truth activists, to help journalists and reporters deal with their shame and guilt. Regardless of our expertise or training we are all capable of judging incorrectly, and of mistaking evil for good. We must try not to damage the pride of journalists by stabbing the words of truth into their wounds, until they make a sound. We should not shame them.
A process of healing has to involve reestablishing trust between the media and the public. Part of the process is about helping journalists overcome feelings of shame and guilt, and making them understand that we have to the past behind us, which means that they have to face, and eventually put aside the painful fact that they defended the official story and aggressively mocked those who tried to deconstruct it. What is important now is exposing the real war criminals behind 9/11 and bringing them to justice, anything else – like blaming and tormenting journalists about their failure to honestly investigate the attacks, is counter-productive.
Using shame to get people to face what they have done, or not done, is not a noble way of achieving anything. Shaming journalists because they have denied 9/11 facts, and arrogantly ignored the 9/11 truth movement won’t reestablish trust and goodwill between the media and the public. Shaming doesn’t create healthy individuals, or healthy societies. It is a feeling that makes us ill, and disturbs our souls. Journalists who feel shame about not seeing the truth about 9/11 should get away from the feeling. It destroys the mind and the spirit. Nobody should feel ashamed except for the criminals and tyrants who actively designed and helped execute the 9/11 attacks.
Feeling a little guilty about not speaking up sooner, however, is natural, and even necessary. I feel guilty that hundreds of thousands of people have unjustly died because I know that there is always more that I can do to help end the unjust wars. All of us can do more. Our conscience demands it. But we shouldn’t let the feeling of guilt take over us. It should empower us, and make us do more to end the wars.
June Price Tangney, a clinical psychologist and professor at George Mason University, co-authored a book called ‘Shame and Guilt‘ with Ronda L. Dearing, a professor of clinical psychology at the University of Buffalo, in 2002, and it has become one of the definitive books on the subject. Their incredible work can help us understand how shame and guilt impede individual and social understanding about 9/11 truth, and help the world move forward and begin a new chapter in America, and the world. In the book, Tangney writes that guilt can be positive force, whereas shame makes us act against our best interests:
“Moderately painful feelings of guilt about specific behaviors motivate people to behave in a moral, caring, socially responsible manner. In contrast, intensely painful feelings of shame do not appear to steer people in a constructive, moral direction. Such intense moral pain about the self cuts to our core, exacting a heavy “penance” perhaps. But rather than motivating reparative action, shame often motivates denial, defensive anger and aggression.” (Shame and Guilt by June P. Tangney and Ronda L. Dearing; 2002; The Guilford Press; pg 2.)
The authors say that guilt is more valuable than shame. Guilt grounds us, and allows us to connect with others in healthy ways, while shame weakens us and undermines our soul’s quest for selfhood and a peace of mind. They write:
“In brief, shame is an extremely painful and ugly feeling that has a negative impact on interpersonal behavior. Shame-prone individuals appear relatively more likely to blame others (as well as themselves) for negative events, more prone to a seething, bitter, resentful kind of anger and hostility, and less able to empathize with others in general. Guilt, on the other hand, may not be that bad after all. Guilt-prone individuals appear better able to empathize with others and to accept responsibility for negative interpersonal events. They are relatively less prone to anger than their shame-prone peers–but when angry, these individuals appear more likely to express their anger in a fairly direct (and one might speculate, more constructive) manner.” (Shame and Guilt by June P. Tangney and Ronda L. Dearing; 2002; The Guilford Press; pg 3.)
Tangney gave a one hour lecture called ‘Shame and Guilt: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly’ that you can watch.
In general, I think personal feelings of shame and guilt better explain why journalists are reluctant to accept 9/11 truth and expose that horrific crime, instead of other arguments like the mainstream media is not covering 9/11 facts because it is funded by a few, status-quo supportive corporations that are profiting from the criminal wars in the Middle East–and that honest journalists are blocked from asking questions about 9/11 or they are scared that their reporting may jeopardize their careers and reputations.
Of course, these complaints are also valid, many of us are well aware that the CIA’s infiltration in the American media has compromised the integrity of the fourth estate, but government disinformation projects and journalists fearing that they will lose their livelihoods should they speak up don’t explain why so many journalists are resistant to the obvious scientific facts that show 9/11 was an inside job, especially journalists in the alternative press who are very critical of the war on terror and the U.S. government’s post-9/11 policies.
Fear is another emotion that is keeping journalists and the media from asking questions about 9/11. Every journalist knows the political and legal consequences for former Bush officials and the U.S. government should it come to public light that the official story is a lie. America’s war on terror would be seen as completely illegitimate and criminal, and charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity would have to be brought against top U.S. government leaders, starting with the former president. The revelations will trigger a new American revolution, bring down the American empire and military-industrial complex, transform the Middle East peace process and all the players involved, and shake up the world order.
But all these are good consequences, and there is nothing to fear. The prospects for peace in the Middle East are greater than we imagine at present. Learning that the war on terror is unjustified, and the threat of Islamic terrorism is completely overblown, emboldens us in the quest for peace and security worldwide. If the feelings of shame and guilt are blocking journalists from seeing this reality, then we as a society must address these feelings, and help members of the media get over them. Letting go of past errors, and the feelings of shame and guilt is difficult, but journalists need to let go. The public needs voices in the media to become champions of the truth and justice. There is no way for the media to rebuild its shattered credibility other than speaking the truth about 9/11, and demanding justice for the victims of the attacks, and the criminal war on terror.
This article was posted: Thursday, February 3, 2011 at 5:39 am