“Eagle Saves Fish From Drowning” | The Tragedy Of Single Story Reporting

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Tapiwa Zuze

The problem of single story reporting has lived with mankind since the foundations of the earth.

We first witness this practice from the first family in the Garden of Eden. After Adam and Eve had eaten of the forbidden tree, in complete defiance to God’s instructions; we see none of the two taking responsibly of the aftermath of their actions. God asked Adam and he replied “the wife you gave me Lord!”… God then proceeded to ask Eve who also replied “the serpent deceived me”. This signaled the birth of the single story tragedy, which has bedevilled mankind throughout the ages.

Over the years, people have made some outrageous decisions after hearing and making conclusions based on a single story. People have suffered permanent wounds, with some now sitting in wheelchairs; after they were attacked because of a single story. Even though some perpetrators may have realised later on that they made gross errors of judgement based on half-baked information; but the damage was already done.

The single story tragedy has been exacerbated by the corrupt world we are living in. Metaphorically; you can come across a tabloid headline that sounds like “Eagle Saves Fish From Drowning”. Really? Can a predatory eagle have the audacity and “kind-heartedness” to save a fish from “drowning”? Can a fish really “drown” in water? Who is fooling who here?

Tapiwa Zuze

Such types of headlines are common in most socio-political circles. They have become a common feature in modern day reportage. Even in churches people are being served with single story reports. Stories are being served based on what needs to be achieved. Good people are being made to look bad and the bad ones are being presented to us as angels from above!

Thieves are being publicly taunted as “hard working role models”. They are being given pulpits to deliver “motivational speeches”. Even deceitful politicians are smuggling their way into presidential palaces and ministerial offices. We have nurtured a cancer that has eaten our moral and ethical standing.

Within your own vicinity, try by all means to hear both sides of the story before making your move. Even at home, endeavour to be a listening parent who hears both sides of the story before condemning one child and praising others. In our companies, schools, churches and other institutions of responsibility; let us get the whole picture of the story before making our decisions.

Don’t be another victim of the single story tragedy.

Signing off.

Tapiwa Zuze

Tapiwa Zuze – www.tapiwazuze.com
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