Buses are now equipped with full news coverage, no matter how violent the content.
I think this bus trend should stop.
Momlogic's Momstrosity: Over the holiday weekend I decided to take my 3-year-old daughter to meet Santa out at the mall. In order to avoid the parking hassles, I
decided to take the bus. I personally love public transportation. I
love the community of it. I love the freedom of not having a car to
deal with -- not to mention not contributing to pollution. When I lived
in San Francisco, I didn't even have a car. Unfortunately, now I live in L.A. and it's a necessity. It was the first time I'd taken a bus in
the four years I've lived here.
Turns out buses are very different these days, at least the ones in L.A., and are all now equipped with televisions. The bus my daughter and I were on had four of them staggered from front to back. I wasn't too pleased to have TV on the bus -- at our house, the television is rarely on, and when it is, we watch videos. But I've come to accept the pervasiveness of the boob tube.
What made me fume was when the news portion of what's called Transit TV came on and the newscaster announced:
"Manhunt still ongoing for the killer of the 6-year-old girl who was shot in her bed on Thanksgiving."
OK, great, so now here I am riding with my impressionable child on a
whimsical trip to meet Santy, and we get to listen to how a
kindergartner was shot at point-blank range in her own home ... and guess
what, kids? He's STILL at large. Merry Christmas!
Talk about a captive audience. What was I supposed to do? Leap off the bus?
If we had been
at home, I would've immediately changed the channel or turned off the
TV. But on a bus, we were trapped. Quickly, I distracted her with an impromptu game of "Count How Many Red Cars You See." It worked. But I
resented having to be put in that position in the first place.
Look, I know I can't protect my kid forever from the evils of this world, but she's only three and a half. Should I let her watch the evening news??!
I want to continue to take public transportation, but at the same time, I don't
want to expose my little one to things that might scare the s**t out of
her. Sounds reasonable, right? Wrong. When I spoke to Mounir
Ibrahim, one of the owners of Transit TV,
the company responsible for public transportation TV across the country, he
told me I was the only person who has ever complained about the
broadcast content. EVER. Out of the over 10 million people who ride on
buses equipped with Transit TV systems in Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Orlando, and Milwaukee. "We cannot shield everybody
from everything," he told me matter-of-factly, and insisted the content
on the buses is "squeaky clean."
Does that mean Mounir is going to stay up with my kid when she starts having nightmares of being shot in bed? Or do I just not take public transit if I don't want my kid exposed to disturbing news coverage?