It must be true, because I read it on some website and a meme! The most reliable sources ever invented! 2018: when people decided to believe completely unfounded, unproven, false propaganda, just because it happened to make them feel good about themselves, without ever really checking something, never verifying anything, never being on the ground, never doing anything that comes close to real journalism, while all the while pretending they know eeeeeeeeeeeeverything.

Here’s an example:

One Ursula Pasche Stouffer comments on Facebook, the digital latrine of the world:

Even according to Hamas, those were NOT innocent civilians, but Hamas members, who were paid to cause as much damage as possible. If they were injured, they’d get quite a lot of money, and if they were killed, their families would get $3000,00, plus other benefits. They put children into the front lines to be shot, because it makes for great propaganda, and obviously, you’re falling for it hook, line and sinker, and spreading that propaganda. Shame on you!

Even in the very, very unlikely case that this statement is true, it’s still bizarre that Israel is so dumb to take the bait and kills those Palestinians, even if they were trying to get killed, they were certainly not doing anything threatening to deserve getting killed. Palestinians should try harder to deserve getting killed. I mean, give them a challenge, let’s at least require them to wound some Israeli before we give them a chance to die. It’s just too easy for them to get killed by Israel and live the rest of their lives on the pension they get from Hamas for dying. Israel is being too nice…

Humans pick an opinion based on their gut feeling and then look for any ‘proof’ to back that opinion up and dismiss all info that might force them to reconsider their opinion

We have repeated this mechanism many times over.

Our opinions usually have very little to do with facts. They have everything to do with emotions. Picking sides in the Israel-Palestine conflict is a good example. Lots of folks are unconditionally pro one side of this ‘conflict’. I am definitely in the side of Palestine. To me it’s not even a ‘conflict’. It’s Israel trying to grab every piece of Palestinian land and creating a vicious Apartheid regime. If anyone is to be blamed for the rise of Hamas it’s Israel itself. If any sense of normalcy would be possible in the land under siege by Israel there would be no Hamas. I really try to be objective about this situation. I’ve also been there, unlike many of the people who feel they know enough to comment, and what I saw there was horrific. Palestinians showed great restraint in the face of daily provocations, bullying and violence from the Israelis. But am open to anti-Palestinian sources and willing to consider what they write.

Odd is that for those who are pro-Israel, Israel can never do anything wrong. Israel did not have to kill Palestinians at the fence the past few weeks. There was no legitimate reason for it. No Israeli would have died if the IAF hadn’t deliberately opened fire. Israel simply knows it can get away with murder as it’s backed by the US and Europe has strong economic ties with Israel. You can kill a bunch of people if you have profitable relationships with the countries who would normally not allow you to get away with murder.

Training people to evaluate new information

I believe we should have lots of training programmes to teach people how to read the news. Reading any article requires being a detective.

  • Who wrote this? Does this news source have ties that influence what it puts out there?
  • Where can I check the claims made in this article?
  • Can I contact experts with opposing views on this issue and compare what they tell me?
  • Does this article leave things out? This is a very important question as it’s one of the best propaganda tricks. You tell just a small part of the truth, it makes you look credible and people who are not that familiar with the issue have no idea what you could possibly be leaving out
  • Are you being objective? Do you have any emotional reasons to be either for or against something? Are you still open to change your opinion if presented with new info?
  • Can you get any firsthand experience?