By now I’m sure you’ve all heard about the measles outbreak linked to someone who visited Disneyland and wasn’t vaccinated. The whole web of rumors and half-truths surrounding the event prompted my teenage son to tell me, “I heard that Disneyland is requiring the measles vaccination now. I don’t know if it’s true though.” So I Googled it and can’t confirm that, so it is probably not true. According to the above video, Disneyland is just asking people who aren’t vaccinated not to visit the par.
I don’t have much time to blog a lot about this incident, I will just refer to the best blog post I’ve seen about this whole media web of half-truths and downright lies.
It’s by The Food Renegade, Kristen, and it’s called “Vaccines, PR Myths, and the News Cycle.” She explains two techniques that people use to spread lies through the media. I highly urge everyone to read this. It is eyeopening. You will learn about astroturfing and seeding. The main takeaway of the whole blog post is this: much of the “news” we hear is manufactured, a euphenism for lies. Much of the news we hear is lies, and often, we even pay for these lies!
This is nothing new, people. It totally reminds me of the Doctrine and Covenants, Section 123 where the fun-to-say word “concatenation” is used. What is that? A concatenation is “a series of interconnected things or events.” In that amazing section, we see that the same thing, the spread of lies in the media as part of a “concatenation,” was going on back in the days of Joseph Smith. The Lord warned the early latter-day saints, through the prophet Joseph Smith, that there are “libelous publications that are afloat” which are in “the magazines, and in the encyclopedias, and all the libelous histories that are published, and are writing, and by whom, and present the whole concatenation of diabolical rascality and nefarious and murderous impositions that have been practiced upon this people..” Wow!
Back in those days, lies were being spread about the Church and Joseph Smith, as they are today. If the media was being used to spread lies and propaganda back then, in the slow days of snail mail, printed newspapers, and a few magazines, how much more can it be used to spread lies today, with the exponential amount of social media where everyone has the ability to publish unsubstantiated claims at the click of a mouse? Bottom line: be careful of what sources you trust. Follow the trail of money, and check what sources your sources use. Is their ultimate source God, love, truth, and trust, or the dark side with the accompanying energies of lies, fear and hate?
Here’s a great video by Sharyl Atkisson, that Kristen featured as part of her blog post. It shows how the media is manipulated by people with evil intentions whose desire is to increase their money at the compromise of integrity. Watch this video, it fascinates me. She talks of how wikipedia, the supposed encyclopedia that anyone can edit, has editors who frequently will take out things other people add, even if the person adding the truth is the subject of the wikipedia article and is the best authority about himself. Learn how to watch out for the “hallmarks of astroturfing.” I like Sharyl’s website and her fight against “obstruction, intimidation, and harassment in Obama’s Washington.”