We have heard a lot about fake news over the last few years. President Donald Trump has made it a rallying cry since he was on the campaign trail.
Is that when it started?
Is fake news even real?
Whether you support Donald Trump or hate Donald Trump there is no denying that one thing his bombastic nature doe is to bring thorny issues to the forefront.
Think about it.
Nearly all of the subjects he tackles in these rambling statements and tweets are things that we complain about, but never talk about.
Fake news is no different. Donald Trump did not invent fake news. It has been with us for decades in its current form. Stories containing opinion beyond fact. Stories curated and presented to support specific narratives and agendas.
None of this is new or illegal. None of this is journalism.
A news story written by a journalist should present all the available facts and none of their opinion. If I can read a story and ascertain the authors opinion from it, this is an editorial. It is not a journalistic story. It’s not created with fact, but opinion.
The story should always be about the facts and details of what happened and what was said. If it is written and edited to support a position or agenda, it is not news, it’s propaganda.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Left or Right, Libertarian or Progressive, it’s propaganda.
It seems that the majority of the “mainstream” media of all types have moved totally away from journalism and entirely into the field of editorial content. This makes it very difficult to find actual news. To feel that you are being informed and not simply led by the nose for someone else’s purposes as it is in the current state of affairs.
We are being played.
Back in the early 2000’s I became frustrated because I could not find any news regarding things I had read about during the day. This was shortly after 9/11. I was following foreign news sources. I would learn about serious and concerning events abroad. I went home wanting to see what would be said about this on the evening news programs. Here’s what they said about these stories: “____” crickets.
“Well, all the networks can’t be this way” I said to myself.
So I set my DVR and recorded all three of the major networks’ evening news broadcasts. I did this for about a year. Came home and dutifully watched each one of them.
I never saw anything about the stories I was interested in. At first I didn’t understand this. Especially since all three of these broadcasts contained essentially all the same stories. They each had the same spin and used the same verbiage. The spin was always in the same direction.
This was a consistent result the entire time of my experiment. Normally, the only different stories between the networks were the feel good stories. I was starting to get a little irritated with these people.
Speaking of people, that’s exactly what I figured out.
Trying to get my news from any of the mainstream sources, both print and broadcast, was something akin to relying on People Magazine to stay informed on current events and the latest global knowledge.
Probably not a winning solution.
Either you can trust the source or you can’t. I can’t rely on someone who has shown me that they want to manipulate me. I want to make my own decisions and follow my own path.
I don’t need some snarky ” journalist” explaining to me how I should view the world or live my life.
That’s the quickest way to get permanently banned from my reading and viewing lists.
Why? Because if I can’t trust you all the time I can’t trust you at all.
We have a free press in the United States. They are an important constitutional check and balance. They are supposed to speak truth to power and hold our elected officials accountable. All of them. Right and left. All of them.
In today’s world, the old stalwarts, the Sage institutions, have abdicated their responsibility. They have turned their back on their charter and the American people. But maybe they did not mean to do this or they don’t even realize it. Or at least I can give them the benefit of the doubt, maybe.
This nearly complete breakdown in journalistic and editorial integrity plays a huge part in the division we now see in our country. There is no way to sugarcoat this outcome.
And, there is no way to absolve the media of their role in this disgrace to our way of life.
Although it seems the majority of the media fits this description, there are exceptions. But the big boys have all gone bad and are no longer to be trusted.
They may never gain the trust back because of their breathless race over the edge of reason and their blatant partisanship.
I am not writing in defense of Pres. Trump. This is not my purpose and it’s not my point. For the sake of this post he is entirely irrelevant. I’m not talking about him. He just poked the tiger.
What I’m writing about here is the jaded and irresponsible fashion in which our established media sources have given themselves over to ideology and hysteria.
All you need to do nowadays is to turn on any news program or cable news channel to see supposedly professional and intelligent people who have turned their entire lives over to Donald Trump.
Literally, these anchors and reporters are so emotionally involved and ideologically opposed that any hope for objectivity is simply a dream.
For some reason these “professional journalists” abandoned all principal and reason to simply write from the shrill voice in their heads.
They seem to gladly turn over all of their personal power to Donald Trump. He speaks or tweets and they react. They react in hysterical and irrational fashion. Grabbing any thread of negative information and then creating whatever their mind can conceive. Just look back over the last couple years.
They do it every day and still claim the mantle of journalism.
In my mind, and according to my mom when I was three years old, this sort of behavior is childish and immature. It shows an extreme lack of emotional intelligence and critical thinking. These are not the kind of people I want to get any information from.