Metro

  • Written by Brandyn Cross

Ben Kingsley's character Cosmo in the 1992 cult classic Sneakers prophetically quipped , The world doesn't operate on reality, but on perception of reality.

Those words have come to roost in this year 2020 as we find ourselves living in a world of few definitive realities. At the same time, perceptions of reality have become so polarized that there seems little to no middle ground. Half the U.S. is viewed by the other half as nothing short of fascist Nazis, while that half views the other as nothing short of Marxist Communists whose goal is the eradication of all Constitutional freedoms.

The problem is not the usual reality, that both sides are right. Rather, it's that both sides are wrong. To the extent either of these polar extremes exists, it does so in statistically immeasurably small numbers. At the same time, those extremes are disavowed by the vast constituency of both sides. Yet, these unfounded accusations dictate the narrative on both sides.

Madison Cawthorn, recently elected Congressman, and the youngest person elected to Congress in over 50 years said, Our two party system has failed us and has pushed our country so far apart, and national leaders on both sides of the aisle are fueling their political campaigns off of this divide.

It's as if both sides look at the other from the outside, and both come away with a nonsensical perception of reality. But it's not surprising as that's what always happens when judging others from outside their reality.

Author Brad Meltzer one profoundly stated, It is very dangerous to try to interpret something from the outside. It’s as if someone unfamiliar with Christianity stepped into a Catholic Church, and heard a priest, in the middle of Holy Communion, say the words, "This is the body of Christ… this is the blood of Christ." Without knowing the context, the ritual can seem strange or unusual, even a little frightening... Without context, we cannot possibly know what is going through the mind of the (practitioners).

The noise and BS of these perceptions of reality irrationally thrown from both sides is so deafening that it blinds us to the realities of our present world. In reality, we are all equally threatened by the same forces upending our culture and society. The ignored reality is that, if there were ever a time to unite and come together, that time is now.

Small businesses are closing so fast they've become an endangered species. Even large chains face the same threats as restaurants, retailers, theaters- brick-and-mortar establishments of all sizes- face a virtual extinction.

Employees and employers alike face a day-to-day fight for survival unless they can operate within a virtual environment. Any establishment dependent upon foot traffic faces an unsure future, with the possible exception of big chain grocery stores such as Wal-Mart. Hell, even churches are going out of business. The longer this reality lasts, the worse will be the carnage.

Even after we prevail against this reality, it's likely perception of reality will exacerbate societal damage for a very, very long time to come.

How many years after an effective Covid-19 vaccine, or therapeutics, will it take for peoples' perceptions to change? How long before we feel safe congregating in numbers again? Or will we ever again?

We, as a society at large, could remain leery of this for another generation, or even more. We can't imagine the extent to which this perception of reality could alter our actual reality, perhaps irrevocably. What we have perceived as our reality before this year may never return, not because a credible, reality-based threat of continued Covid-19 danger persists but rather, because we perceive that it does. Having experienced a world in which close, casual, crowded contact is threatening, we may never be comfortable living that way again, until eventually congregating in crowds becomes in itself an uncomfortable enigma.

And what will be the effects of this new perception of reality?

As I am a writer, actor, filmmaker and songwriter / recording artist, I'll look at this industry as a microcosm of society as a whole. Through this example, we may glimpse the changes we could expect to see throughout other industries as well.

To state the most obvious first, movies can no longer rely on box office receipts to recover film production costs. That means they will depend almost exclusively on streaming, on-demand and broadcast revenues. Streaming revenues will have to become more equitable for content creators, although I doubt anyone could predict exactly how this will most likely develop. In the interim, studios certainly have to rethink mega budgets.

I've written before about likely effects on the music industry, with big budget arena and stadium tours perhaps a permanent casualty of Covid. The effect of this is profound, as live performances account for a musician's primary income. Very few music artists make much, or any, money from their recordings. They make their incomes from concerts.

Nearly all musicians at every level have been unemployed, completely stripped of their incomes for the whole of 2020 and it's taking its toll. This was emphasized in a conversation I had recently with Jeff Phillips, a musician-friend who does charity work with a coalition of rock star wives. He told me many of them are very worried, as they're starting to panic about a looming potential of financial collapse.

With a new wave of restrictions cropping up all over the country- and world for that matter- it may be a long time before the concert business resumes to any real degree, and the days of arena and stadium tours may literally be over.

This same problem exists beyond music as well. Blue Collar Tour comedian Ron White recently put his long-time Southern California mansion on the market. He released a marketing video advertising the sale, which he hilariously narrates himself.

At the end of the video, he explains his reason for selling. In it, he poignantly states, I'd like to thank my fans who bought this house, and let me have the pleasure and privilege of living in it for quite a few years. And it's a shame to let it go but, in these times of Corona virus, we're all looking at new realities, right? And so, at one point, it looks smart for me to act like I might never make another dime, and it's time to scale it on back a little bit.

This sentiment is also proposed by some of our most gifted minds. In an August, 2020 podcast, scientists Lex Fridman and Sheldon Solomon discussed the potential for our society to collapse at any moment over the effects of Covid-19.

In speaking of broken dreams from the countless tens of thousands- or more- of businesses shutting down, compounded by the cumulative total of other psychological effects taking us into unknown dystopian directions, Fridman looked a generation into the future, asking, What happens 10, 15 years from now because of the Covid pandemic that's happening now?

Solomon responded: The way that we manage existential terror is to embrace culturally constructed belief systems that give us a sense that life has meaning and we have value. And, in the form of self esteem- which we get from perceiving that we meet or exceed the expectations associated with the role that we play in society- well, here we are right now in a world where, first of all, if you have nothing you are nothing. And secondly... a lot of jobs are gone and they're not coming back. That's where the self esteem and identity come in. It's not only that you don't have anything to eat, you don't even have a 'self' anymore to speak of because we typically define ourselves- you know, as Marx put it, "You are what you do." And now, who are you when your way of life, as long as your way of earning a living, is no longer available?

A lot to think about. Regardless how our perceptions of reality may superficially divide us, we're all embarking on a strange new reality, and where it leads us is entirely unknown. We may all step out of it into a new reality as strange as if this journey were through a wormhole.

miniBIO:

Brandyn Cross is an autistic, multi-faceted artist who was left a wheelchair-bound amputee after a severe industrial accident. Only intensifying his drive to succeed, he has since written and recorded charting and award-winning songs, acted in films and TV series, written books and screenplays, and written more than 100 episodes for TV series and specials, all while inspiring others through his motivational public speaking.

https://www.brandyncross.com/

Entertainment News

My Musical Journey – Zarbo

People call me Zarbo. I call myself an artist/producer currently focused on creating catchy electronic dance music and exploring new genres that didn’t exist at the beginning of my musical career in the ‘70’s.  I am the original founding member, fr...

Alex Zarbo - avatar Alex Zarbo

News Company asked some Music Industry “Insiders” their thoughts on the current state and future of “Real Music”

To get a feel for the current state of the music industry, NewsCo asked some insiders to share their thoughts. Here is what they had to say. Real Music, to me, means music created by real instruments where you can hear the bow go across the fiddle o...

NewsCo - avatar NewsCo

Navigating the Gender Gap, Part 2 For Women: How to Work with Men in Music

After comparing notes with some of my female music friends, I’ve come up with some pointers for women about working with male colleagues. As I mentioned in my previous article, “How to Work with Women in Music,” these guidelines are based on per...

Angela Predhomme - avatar Angela Predhomme

The Making Of “ Birkenhead Drill”

The process of self producing a full length album in the middle of a pandemic has been an unending lesson in humility, but it’s also affirmed our love of music and more importantly the music we make together. The journey of Birkenhead Drill taught ...

The Jones Title - avatar The Jones Title

A Healing Power of Rap and Rock

What do Jay-Z, Rick Ruben, Neil Diamond, Snoop Dogg, Chago G. Williams, and Toto’s Steve Lukather have in common?  They can be combined into Six Degrees of Inclusion (not separation per-se).   They all have millions of fans and they have all hugely...

Rebecca DGD - avatar Rebecca DGD

Gold selling and Platinum Award Winning Recording Artist Ny'a, giving back to her community

Gold selling and Platinum Award Winning Recording Artist Ny'a, will be Live in concert on Sessions Livestream, Saturday April 24th at 7:00pm EST. Tickets are $5 dollars, with a donation going to Rahway Food For Friends. Ny'a believe in giving back ...

NewsCo - avatar NewsCo

Metropolitan Business News

4 Creative suggestions for your first business card

Almost all businesses nowadays have a business card. Business cards are important to easily showcase your brand, yourself, and your business. However, not all business cards are made the same. Som...

NewsCo - avatar NewsCo

WHEN WORLDWIDE BUSINESS BUILDING POWERHOUSE ASHLEY ANN SPEAKS, LIVES CHANGE

Ask any of her thousands of global followers - especially the 11,000-plus who’ve learned to monetize their social media, and the 700-plus who’ve created six figure incomes – and they’ll be happy to ...

NewsCo - avatar NewsCo

Why Creativity Is So Important In Digital Marketing

The Role of Creativity in Digital Marketing's Future  As marketers, one of the key tasks is to be creative and look for ways to generate demand and interest in our services and products. Creati...

NewsCo - avatar NewsCo

Essential Tips for Developing Corporate Websites

The corporate industry, just like the others, is experiencing a massive technological revolution. Organizations have changed their marketing criteria by embracing the internet. Therefore, do not be ...

News Co - avatar News Co

How to Make a Personal Injury Claim for Minors

As a parent, you want to make sure your child is always safe. But as much as you want to keep him under your watch, it is impossible to be there for him all the time. When he is out there attendin...

News Co - avatar News Co

Dress for Success - Style Essentials for Every Businessmen

Did you ever glance at a person in passing and instantly think, “Wow, they must be successful”? It seems like the rich and successful people always stand out from the crowd without even trying, ...

Diana Smith - avatar Diana Smith

Writers Wanted


News Co Media

Content & Technology Connecting Global Audiences

More Information - Less Opinion