Fake News!

Trump trumpets this almost child-like phrase regularly on Twitter. The implication is that he doesn’t believe a word of what others are reporting. They are liars.
But how can anything be true? How can we believe anything with certainty?
We can’t.
Sometimes it’s all about blind faith because some things we will never experience for ourselves.  We have to believe in what and who we feel comfortable with and I for one think that the most powerful man in the world (allegedly) should not be taking tantrums on Twitter.  Surely as a world leader, he should be more dignified in his behaviour?  Surely he should have more important things to think and talk about?
There is also a lot of talk about making America great again. The implication is it’s not great. It’s not the most powerful country in the world. He implies he is going to be the saviour.
I recently watched Scandal and though it is a fictional programme, some of the characters resemble (whether deliberately or not) real political figures.  Hollis Doyle in his quest to be president is scuppered when he is exposed as a racist and a bigot.  He reminds me of Donald Trump. He wants to boot certain groups of people out of America, just like Trump.  But what was more notable was the response from his rival Edison Davis when interviewed about his plans:
“…..nothing needs to be restored, nothing needs to be made great again. We are a better nation now that we were 20 years ago, than we were 50 years ago, than we were 100 years ago, than we were at our founding. That is the point of America. We are a country that is always greater than our past. I am proud to live in a country where a black man has a legitimate shot at the White House.”
Video is here.
He is stating that America is great and is always becoming greater through progress; through acceptance of everyone regardless of skin colour, religion, age or gender. POSITIVE progress for an already great country to become greater.
If only Donald Trump watched Scandal. He could learn lessons from its script writers.
We don’t need more hate and discrimination in this world. We need less. We need more patience with others and acceptance.  We need to accept that we are not all the same (in small ways – we’ve got to have our quirks) and yet we are where it matters.  One race = human.
My point is, Trump’s Twitter tantrums are not helpful. How do we know that he is telling the truth in what he writes?  We don’t, just as we don’t know whether anything we read is true.  Yes, some news pieces might be “fake news” and be open to interpretation but maybe that’s not for him to decide.  Maybe he should be more concerned about the fear and alarm he has caused worldwide.  If that’s fake news – prove it. Don’t promote fear and hatred. Promote peace and well-being.  Encourage unity, not division.
One race = human.
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Kindness. Compassion. Respect. Online.

Like most people, I check in with social media each day.  In recent times, I have noticed an increase in angry posts.  Why is that? I suppose it harks back to my previous post about people being so ready to be offended.

Why is everyone so angry?

Where love and fear mix; a loved one is threatened, you are threatened or if you or a loved one are physically violated, this I can understand. Anger in retaliation. Though anger is not the most productive of emotions, I would be hard-pressed to remain calm if someone hurt someone I love.  It’s justifiable. Love drives us to protect.

But how can we justify online anger? It’s discontentment, pure and simple.  We think our lives should be better because we see images of people apparently living the high life.  It also arises from boredom and put simply, it’s just too easy to vent your spleen online.   The audience is ready-made, in the form of Facebook friends or Twitter followers or whichever platform you prefer.

These days everyone is a politician.

Everyone is a personal trainer.

Everyone is a dietitian/nutritionist.

One religion is better than another.

Everyone is an expert in something.

What about respect? What about respecting that we are all entitled to opinions but we can’t be right about everything?  What about having a difference of opinion without belittling someone or expressing anger?  What about recognising that we can all learn something new?

First world problems are less serious that third world problems so we squabble about politics, sports, fashion.  This is fair enough but people don’t want to learn anything.  They think they are right so that’s that. Full stop.

So what can be done about it?

Kids receive internet safety chats at school to keep them safe from predators.  Maybe there should be more training for adults. The ease of access to the internet via laptops or smart phones isn’t necessarily a good thing if the user is not savvy.  Not all news is real. Not all profiles are real. Personas can be fake.  People can be less than tactful with a keyboard than they might be verbally.  I think we need to go back to basics.

Don’t accept everything as real.

Remember that fundamentally, human beings are good people.

How would you treat someone offline? With kindness and compassion?

Good.

Remember that when you type.

Kindness. Compassion. Respect.