Believing Everything You Read or Hear

Please.

Stop.

Now.

I will be the first to admit that I’ve made a few mistakes in this department, but really – some things are just obviously not true or being taken from a satire site.  For instance, this wonderful gem that has come around to me several times with accompanying comments about what an idiot the guy was/I couldn’t do that/blahblahblah:

Man Emerges from bunker 14 years after Y2K scare

After my Blast From the Past flashback – and I would so not mind being “bunkered” with Brendan Frasier – I pulled up the page to finally see what people were up-in-arms over.   Immediately, the photo caption set off warning bells.    Listening to the radio cast had me laughing.  This was obviously a joke and a possible slam against “Doomsday Preppers” in general, but that part I’ll ignore.  That would be a whole ‘nother blog post.   The final message about living as if the world won’t end was good.   You can’t let fear rule you.

What gets me are the amount of people who believe this.   And the stuff from The Onion.  And the stuff from The National Report. And the stuff from… well, you get the idea.  It’s clearly a satire site.  If you weren’t sure, the comments would’ve clued you in.

The same thing applies to the so-called “urban legend” sites like Snopes which has been called out several times for being wrong or outright lying.  Research it.

All I want to do is yell, “Dear, Lord, people, grow a brain!  Or at least some critical thinking skills.  Reading Comprehension.  Something!”   I can forgive those things unless they type like this:

“U r sumtin elz.  Dis ladee iz kool.”

I feel so sorry for your English teacher.  S/he must need migraine meds after dealing with your papers.  At least, I assume people who type like that are young and still in school.   I don’t know of any self-respecting adult who does it.  Maybe my friends are just odd.   I just want to go old school nun, take their keyboard and smack their hands with it.

I follow a “healthy eating” blog which isn’t listed here, but I question everything I read.  I don’t take it as gospel truth.  Very few questioned the author’s current posting but as I read, I realized several factors were just plain ignored in the course of her “deduction”.  And she contradicted herself about something she normally is against eating.   However, as I read the comments, I see the bandwagon is about to tip over from so many jumping on it.

A few did question her findings, and I silently cheered them on, but she didn’t answer them well.  In fact, it seemed like she was avoiding.   I highly disagree with her opinion (because that’s what it was), but it’s her blog.  She can write what she wants.  I won’t be following that particular recommendation.

Seriously, I know I’m not the only person who read about the gay waitress and her “tip” and didn’t believe it.  The amount of people who cheered her on, called people horrible names if they said they didn’t believer her, sent her money (!),  and just fell for it hook, line and sinker was huge.

I read the “news” story, examined the receipt and thought, I’d bet my house this is fake.  I had people I know tell me I was an awful person for thinking the waitress was lying.  And guess what?  She was.  I feel bad for the people who believed her.  I just shake my head at the people who sent her money.  I hope the girl gets jail time.

I feel the same way about people who blindly follow the government, their doctors, the CDC, FDA, etc.  I have personal experience with an FDA approved drug that went horribly wrong, so I am totally justified for that.   I usually say I have 6 children, because I really don’t want to explain the death of the eldest.   Basically, I have learned these lessons the hard way.

Then there is the opposite problem of people not paying attention to what is said or shown in a news story.

The assumptions start flying even when the article or video already addressed that point, yet they missed it.  Maybe they were drunk?  Drugged?  Two year old dragging peanut butter across their eyes?

This article has been posted on many regular and alternate news sites.   It’s about a woman who owns her home free and clear.  She chooses to live off-grid and code enforcement showed up with an eviction notice without due process claiming the home is uninhabitable.  She collects rain water, cooks using propane, her house is clean, she is clean and wearing make-up, her toilet obviously has water in it.  How is it uninhabitable?

My I.Q. dropped by many points just reading the comments.

One said something alone the lines of if he had a neighbor crapping in her yard, he’d be glad if the city stepped in.  Where did he come up with that?!  I understand trolls, but my brain slightly imploded.  It was pointed out to him that the video shows she has water in her toilet and other comments point out that the city population mainly have septic systems.

We lose power all the time.  We have a septic system.  We use a bucket of grey water to flush.  Watching the video seems to show her toilet water is also “grey”.   I could be making a big assumption, but I’m going to assume she uses her rain water to wash her dishes, then uses that water to flush her toilet.   No big deal, people.

Another said something about maybe she rents and the landlord wants her out.  Um, did you even bother to watch the video?  If not, don’t comment until you do.  If so, please step away from your keyboard.   It’s clearly stated she owns the home “free and clear”.

A resident of the city posted that the codes do not say one must have electric and running water.  There is nothing about living “off-grid”.   The video shows a clean home, both inside and out, and a well fed, healthy looking older woman.  Obviously she is doing fine.

Even better is what people are missing, because they’re too busy focusing on something they don’t understand or agree with: the government is stepping in without due process (there is a certain document that addresses this issue – know it?), and trying to kick a woman out of her home for no apparent reason.

While the internet can be a wonderful tool to do research, connect with old friends, share things with family easily, educate others about various subjects, or  – like myself – learn about things and share my experiences, the idea of using common sense seems to be lacking.

Of course, it could just be my cynical and distrustful nature showing through.

 

 

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