Friday, September 19, 2008

Let's at least try to get our facts right, shall we?

I was going to write about this yesterday as I had received, over the last several days, a number of anti-Obama emails from a couple of senders who shall remain unnamed, but now I'm glad I saved it for such a time as this.

Regarding the anti-Obama emails, I get these things quite frequently, as I'm sure many of you do, and always interspersed among them are claims about Mr. Obama that in no way can or have been substantiated. In fact, in many cases, most even, these claims have long since been debunked. Look, people, it ain't that hard to check it out with Snopes, and it's a good sign, by the way, that it's very possibly an untruth if in fact it contains no attribution to back it up. Whatever you think of Mr. Obama, let's at very least give him the benefit of stating only those things about him that we know beyond a reasonable doubt to be true, good, bad, or indifferent.

Now that I got that off my chest, here's another case in which one individual is making false claims about another individual, most notably for our purposes here, about this person's profession. Evidently the person making the claim does not recognize the fact that doing so without substantiation discredits him. I just wonder why a writer would do this, discredit himself, when it is such an easy task to avoid it in so many cases?

It puts me in mind of an incident which occured months back on another site and in which I became involved. An individual wrote in a comment of another individual that the latter was married and that his wife had converted him to a particular brand of Christianity. When I interjected, asking where he got his information and explaining that my understanding was that this individual was in fact not married, and never had been married, the individual responded with something to the effect that "well, I may have been wrong about that, but it's irrelevant to my point." But it wasn't irrelevant to his point, it was in fact part of the basis on which he was establishing his point about this individual and the reason he disagreed with and disliked him.

C'mon people! Let's try to get our facts straight about others, though they may be our political enemies, before we go about broadcasting them all over the internet. It's the least we can do. And like I said before, it really just discredits the person, whether he's the originator of the claim or merely an agent who propagates it, who engages the practice of making false claims about others.

As to the person who made the false claim concerning the other's marital status, I've never since been able to read him without reflecting on that incident. Likewise, when I receive these emails from the "usual suspects", whether they're about Mr. Obama or whomever, I'm automatically put on guard. Is this really necessary?


Flatulent Fuzz said...

I too have been the recepient of those Obama bashing e-mails. That is one of the dirtiest political tricks in the game. What amazes me the most is just how effective they are. People take one look at that garbage and take it as fact. Based solely on the fact that it was forwarded from someone they know. When it comes right down to it, it is character assassination and nothing more.

People really should hold themselves to a higher standard.

Call Me Mom said...

I'm in complete agreement with you gentlemen. Lying is reprehensible and we need to hold ourselves to a higher standard.

I have not received any of the e-mails to which you are referring, for which, I am thankful.

Terry Morris said...

Thanks to both of you.


You're right, of course, because it comes from a friend or relative, people automatically assume the truthfulness of the message. We really should hold ourselves to a higher standard.


Your excellent entry Trust isn't everything, it's the only thing is apropos to this discussion, I think.

Which reminds me, I need to add that entry to my list of recommended blog posts. Off to do so now. :-)