Media and Influence – Whose Truth is Reliable?

  • The other way to seek the truth is to get our information from as many different sources with diverse opinions as possible.
  • If we don’t make the effort to be thoroughly informed, unscrupulous individuals will be able to bend us through emotional or intellectual manipulation.
  • If any individual or group attacks the freedom to express our ideas no matter how distasteful those ideas may be, then we must suspect that these people and groups want to ultimately enslave us and limit our freedom.

We are fortunate to live in a country and at a time when we have almost unlimited access to information — political, social and personal through many TV and radio outlets, through newspapers and through the internet. What many of us don’t always take the time to realize is that all of these outlets are businesses who have owners and motives and agendas of their own which do not always reflect truth. These businesses also have advertisers who ultimately have their own agenda which can compromise the objectivity of reporting what is true.

The Bill of Rights includes Freedom of Speech, a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction. The term “freedom of expression” is sometimes used synonymously but includes any act of seeking, receiving, and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used.

How then can we decide that the source of our information is truthful and reliable? We probably can’t, unless we know who owns the outlet and understand their motives. The other way to seek the truth is to get our information from as many different sources with diverse opinions as possible and then sift through all the different opinions and make an informed judgment.

This may seem like too much of an effort for most of us. Is it really important that we do this? It is one of the most important things that we will ever do. If we don’t make the effort to be thoroughly informed, unscrupulous individuals will be able to bend us through emotional or intellectual manipulation to become their puppets for carrying out their ideals. That is how countries ultimately lose their freedom.

It is all the more important now because the current world trend in so many countries including our own is toward limiting challenging ideas and trying to demean and control our media. We must value all of our media and fight for the freedom of all the press to write and speak whatever they feel is their truth even if we don’t agree with them and even when we are concerned about what they say. That is what makes a democracy strong. If any individual or group attacks the freedom to express our ideas no matter how distasteful those ideas may be, then we must suspect that these people and groups want to ultimately enslave us and limit our freedom. No one, of course, must be able to advocate violence, but beyond that one limitation, in a free society we must allow all diverse opinions. No matter how difficult that is.

It will take the awareness of all of us that there will always be unscrupulous individuals who will try to manipulate our thinking, if we allow them to do it. A truly informed electorate is the one way that we will always be able to know the truth of any given situation and the only way that we will continue to retain our precious freedom of thought and action in a continuing free society.

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June Stepansky

June Stepansky is a published writer and poet who writes books and articles about happiness, self-improvement and social and political issues. Free books by June Stepansky A Different Voice—free self-help book https://www.free-ebooks.net/self-improvement/A-Different-Voice Kaleidoscope—free poetry book https://www.free-ebook.net/poetry/kaleidoscope

One thought to “Media and Influence – Whose Truth is Reliable?”

  1. Freedom of expression is an “ACT” and is not to be misconstrued as “freedom of speech”. Though it’s not usually thought of in that manner until someone finds themself in Court for pulling their pants down in public or doing something that is illegal, illegal meaning what is written in the law books. Let’s face it, not every State is a California of naked homosexuals.
    I just thank God that I, as a private citizen, still has the ability to make a Citizens Arrest. I have done so a few times now and no politician except for the President is too far reaching. It’s also no secret that the left has all but wrapped up the news and media and have coupled their gathering to extreme Censorship. Anyone sharing News articles on Facebook or Twitter will not have their articles seen on an even keel with the left. I’m living proof and so are most other Journalist’s who side with the right or conservatives. All this, in itself, means that biased thoughts and reporting will be the norm. I myself believe that Journalist’s and publishers alike should be held accountable for false and fake news. But then I also believe that all Journalist’s should be unbiased and uncensored. Till these things come about the truth will remain to be only half-truths or outright lies by CNN and MSNBC and others.
    Anyway, good story and keep up the good work. God bless you.

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