Does anyone remember when the source of knowing what was going on in the world was the newspaper, which had a morning and evening delivery? Then the television had news, with Walter Cronkite and others like he, telling us the news morning, noon and evening. Just the news. Radio was the away from home source for news. All had news, what was happening, headlines of what we missed during the night. Maybe some of it was slanted, or biased, but most was the news. The information. Given to the people to discern for themselves what it meant. Little of it had anything to do with the private lives of others. Just the facts that were pertinent to us.
Not anymore. We have computers, smartphones, smartwatches. Social media allows news affiliates, and any person who has an opinion,thought or fact, shares to all who are ‘signed up’. The problem is, too many people consider their thoughts and opinions are fact. And the same too many do not know the difference between a thought and an opinion.
A great many people mistake opinions for thought. Herbert V. Prochnow
News media has lost sight of fact and opinion. They get a few facts and decide what in their opinion will draw ratings and fabricate the rest. Which essentially is lying.
Objective journalism and an opinion column are about as similar as the Bible and Playboy magazine.–Walter Cronkite
We who have been going to the news for our information, believing we are receiving just facts have been conditioned to believe opinion mixed with truth. We don’t know we are being manipulated by the chic in the short dress or the dude wearing makeup who does not know what objective even means.
“The great enemy of truth is very often not the lie–deliberate, contrived and dishonest–but the myth–persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the cliches of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought. -John F Kennedy
The fewer the facts, the stronger the opinion. Arnold H. Glasow
With social media, Facebook, twitter, internet, news/information is given to us by whomever we individually choose, or accept, or befriend, what we post. Those whose character we think we know because we get a retweet, heart, or thumbs up from our opinions.
People seem not to see that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Twitter is my lesser of two evils. I don’t Facebook. The why is my opinion. I follow news feeds and people, in my opinion, who are factual with their information, laced with conservatism and Christianity. I like to tweet now and then to these strangers, with like opinion, to share some facts or show my thoughts, and sometimes opinionated. I get a warm fuzzy feeling when I get a retweet or a heart. And a bit of a panicked feeling when someone attacks my opinion, even though I at times am trying to knock some sense into someones brains.
“Do not think of knocking out another person’s brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.― Horace Mann
“The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately.” ― Bertrand Russell, Sceptical Essays
I do try my darndest to make sure my posts are accurate. Factual. My opinions are truly thoughts and I can find something real to support them. Experience or wisdom.
“There are in fact two things, science and opinion; the former begets knowledge, the latter ignorance.” ― Hippocrates
I have been confronted a few times by a stranger. Each time I think it is a misunderstanding of my posting in just a few words instead of a whole blog. I explain my reasoning, sure the person on the other end will understand. But they have not, any time. They argue, they attack, they ‘curse’, they insult. Before responding I usually go to their ‘page’ and read responses to others. I find I am not the only little bird that has been shot down.
Stubborn and ardent clinging to one’s opinion is the best proof of stupidity. Michel de Montaigne
Sometimes I respond to explain further. I want to point out they are professing opinion as fact. I want ‘them’ to see the truth or find it. Sometimes I just want them to accept we have different opinions. It usually blocking. I have read tweet strings where the antagonist use the blocking of them as a ‘triumph’ , in their opinion. Matt Walsh says he never blocks, he is a stronger person than I. I just don’t want to have that in my view anymore.
Be able to defend your arguments in a rational way. Otherwise, all you have is an opinion. Marilyn vos Savant
What I see social media doing is more harm than good. It separates and divides by whom is following you. It allows us to ‘speak’ to people in ways we would never do if in a public social situation. We express our prejudice opinions in short incomplete sentences with a stab of the ‘enter’ key. We judge others by their response or lack of. We seek recognition, feed our pride with the amount of response we get from people we don’t know, and never will. We rip those we differ with, government officials, celebrities, individuals, and feel powerful and vindicated by the birds that flock with us.
I think, with all of our media sources we actually receive less information, less facts today. All the scrambling to be the most listened to,the most followed or re posted has brought on sensationalism, and very little truth. The first to say how many have been killed and the color of the shooter and place blame is the goal of the affiliates. They speculate and follow the white suv down the highway for hours, subjecting us to more than we should experience. Instead of reading the facts, and ending with “That’s the way it is…” never spinning the story, just the facts.
Last night 5 policemen were killed and 11 injured in Dallas, following the killing of two black men by police, one in Minnesota and another in Louisiana. The man doing the killing took advantage of the Black Lives Matter Protest in Dallas and shot non black police at the rally. What if he had not heard the news of Alton Sterling’s and Philander Castillo’s deaths as the media slanted it into an act of hate? What if the news was told as it was: Stupid, fearful, ill trained police and the horror, for all ,to have such incompetence killing citizens. What if he had not seen footage of the grieving families at press conferences crying out in pain and fear of the white oppressive police. What if the media did not present the news until all the facts were out? What if he did not have Facebook or Twitter to fuel his rage, to vent anger and empower his mission? What if the news, the government, the ‘sides’ did not have the venue to incite prejudice? What if our President’s (who claims only one race of his heritage) rhetoric, could not be heard on every electronic device, blaming whites, guns, and conservatives for all the stupid actions of the nation? What if instead of posting on Facebook and Twitter and texting video of a men being shot, we went on our knees, praying to God for our forgiveness, for His protection, for His saving grace. What if?
Mark 11:22 And Jesus answered saying to them, “Have faith in God. 23Truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says is going to happen, it will be granted him. 24Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you. 25Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions. 26But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions.”