Misinformation spreads rapidly on social media following natural disasters, terrorist attacks and other dramatic news events. In addition to fake, altered photos and false “breaking news,” we also are bombarded with conspiracy theories. We need to make sure that our students and community have the news detective skills they need to prevent them from believing these falsehoods.
I have heard, for example, that there is one particular religion that controls all the money, or that seven rich powerful men secretly run the world, or that the covid virus is a scam by the world’s governments to have control of all the people.
Since when has any group of rich and powerful people or countries been able to get along together secretly for a long period of time?
The truth is rich and powerful people think they are smarter and better than everyone else and they don’t work together well as a team. In other words, these extremely motivated leaders will often utilize any weakness in their peers to get to the top of the organization and may sell each other out. That is why it’s difficult to have major conspiracies… those involved can gain advantage by ratting out (reporting) his associates.
Even though most conspiracy theories are exaggerated or not true, we shouldn’t live in a fantasy world where we think the governments of the world are solely there to help the public. The governments of the world are predominantly run by intelligent, motivated, aggressive people who often make decisions to help their family and friends, and who are also usually part of the rich and powerful.
Becoming intelligently distrustful of every government and major corporation in the world — in an informed manner — is an obligation of every citizen on the planet.
The freedom of press, radio, television and other news media will always be the most critical factor in protecting the people of this planet. A corrupt government will take action to control the information to the public as one of its first steps in its lust for dictatorship.