There are so many things to unpack here: American exceptionalism, a lack of awareness of the world beyond America’s borders, gullibility due to a very “insular” education, and a monomaniacal devotion to television and to whomever shouts the loudest (be it on TV, on radio, or online).
Also, U.S. public media is very weak due to chronic lack of investment while all other news outlets are private entities fighting tooth and nail to make a buck.
This doesn’t make for an informed nation, especially with all the paywalls on all the good stuff, NYT, Wapo, New Yorker…
On the other hand, the fake news garbage is always free. InfoWars, Daily Caller, Breitbart… it’s like a trough where you can feast until you self-combust with outrage amid never-ending feedback loops of xenophobia, bigotry…
In comparison, the French media landscape is completely different, as Hufnagel pointed out. Even when run by private companies, TV and radio are governed by a strong public service ethos. Not so in America where it’s all about generating as much profit as possible.
One way of cutting through the crap is to diversify one’s news sources and read/listen to/watch foreign news outlets with a strong English language output and a robust presence in the U.S. The BBC is always an accessible and excellent starting point, especially as the corporation is duty bound to remain impartial.
Lastly, thank you for this piece that felt like a much needed shot in the arm. Merci beaucoup!