The past year has opened my eyes to a lot of things. What I’m noticing more and more, particularly on social media, is people that share stories that fit their agenda with literally no concern about the facts. It gets worse when the facts become clear, yet they double down.
I see it happen more often than it should.
- Post: “Person x said this horrible thing.”
- Comment on the post: “No, they didn’t. Here’s the actual quote.”
- Original post: “Maybe so, but you can imagine them saying it and we’re heading for bad things!”
There are psychological reasons behind defending your past words, even if they’re incorrect, but that’s beyond the scope of my knowledge. My push is to simply encourage you to reach for the truth, even if you don’t like it.
When Matt Lauer’s sexual harassment allegations surfaced a few years ago, one of the shocking pieces was that he had a button under his desk to lock the door remotely and it seems he made very illicit use of that button.
Somehow his name came up in conversation recently, and I mentioned the door lock and how awful it was. I was quickly corrected by someone who accurately pointed out that many of the staff at NBC had a similar lock, and they were intended for safely reasons. She was quick to point out that she wasn’t defending Lauer, but simply defending the truth. She caught me offering a misleading statement and corrected it, and I love it. My thoughts and facts on what happened with Lauer are now a bit more accurate than they were before. I obviously 100% oppose everything he did, but I won’t make up fake facts to make my case stronger.
Biden and the Pledge
It’s like the situation I shared a few months ago about Joe Biden “forgetting” the Pledge of Allegiance. My point in that post was that early facts weren’t accurate, but it also ties into the “truth matters” as well. One friend of mine posted that video on Facebook with thoughts about about “awful” this was, and why we need to be scared of his fading mental capacities.
When shown the truth of the incident, she ignored that truth and simply jumped to other examples of him misspeaking in the past, ignoring the main content of her post. She’s a sharp, well-respected person, but she’s clearly someone that will spin facts to fit her narrative. It’s not a good look.
Change your mind
I try to be willing to change my mind when the facts change. It’s a slippery slope between “changing your mind” and “flip-flopping”, but staying on the side of truth is always a good place to be.
Karen Cleveland says
Thanks for this reminder Mickey!
I’ve found myself sharing things on FB that align with my opinions – without fact checking them first – and your past gentle “pointing out” of aspects I overlooked has helped me be more selective (and I hope accurate) about what I share.