The Band of Uninformed Experts
Let’s face it, we have become a country of uninformed experts. We managed to callously create a society based on the foundations of misinformation and deceit. Many of us have not only blindly accepted this, but have willingly perpetrated it.
Today, it seems as if everybody has a Yelp! profile proclaiming the next best restaurant with vague descriptions like “simply amazing” and “very good,” as if this is evidence enough of an establishment’s merit. Frankly, I do not believe you. Similarly, I do not trust or believe that Donald Trump’s new budget director of this fair country will be successful simply because our President-elect said “he’s a tremendous talent, especially when it comes to numbers and budgets.” Tell me why he’s tremendous. Tell me why he’s qualified. If I came to you and said I would be a better quarterback for the Patriots than Tom Brady, wouldn’t you demand I prove this? Wouldn’t you demand I show one iota of evidence to support this outrageous claim? Or would you just take me at my word? How has the line between truth and absurdity become so blurred?
There will be no end to fake news: this is a reality we all must face. In this era, everybody is a source while few are true connoisseurs of intelligence. Perhaps it’s because many of us feel threatened by intelligence, and we take it upon ourselves to insist our point of view is the one and only authority. Take this blog, for example. I, too, have the absurd belief that people will not only read my words, but treat them as grand influence. It’s humbling to see my readers approach my paragraphs with such skepticism I can almost feel them screaming how ludicrous and asinine my thoughts are as soon as my articles are posted. But I take solace in the fact that I approach arguments the same way my high school English teachers encouraged us to approach our papers: establish a theory, present your arguments, and back up those arguments with statements of fact. We, as a country, should no longer be satisfied when somebody says, “Well, I’m entitled to my opinion and you’re entitled to yours.” No, you knucklehead, you’re not. If your opinion is that the sky is a shade of neon pink, I demand from you a mountain of evidence to support your claim.
Having an opinion does not automatically make you informed. At times, even I have wished that weren’t true. But it is an actuality we all must acknowledge and accept. And, while it’s okay to question the opinions of others, we need to research those opinions or proclamation and poke holes in it with as much relevant and valid information that we can uncover. It’s time to be informed experts again. It’s time to question the establishment when they arrogantly and blatantly feed us lies. No, Realtime Politics, it is not true Democrats are filing treason charges against Trump. No, Alexander Warren of USA Politics Today, it is not true Hillary Clinton has a child trafficking ring. No, Trump supporters, in spite of what the majority of you may think, he did not win the popular vote. And No, Liz “BBQ sauce tastes great on everything” T, I do not believe it to be true that “never before has there been such a GENIUS fusion of two of America's two [sic] most beloved delicacies: doritos nacho cheese chips and the taco bell taco.” And, even if I were to believe it, what makes Doritos and Taco Bell tacos delicacies? What makes it a “GENIUS fusion?” I know you “ate two and wasn’t even drunk,” but the reality that Yelp! has deemed you a “2016 Elite” critic is heartbreaking. I’m sorry, Liz “BSTGOE” T, but I can’t help questioning your assertions just like I question the assertions of Mr. Warren, Realtime Politics, and a vast many others out their claiming to speak the truth.
We need to stop reporting headlines as fact and get into the meat of stories; it’s the only way we can decipher between what is true and what is baseless. If we do not have decency in the news, then there’s no way we can claim to be a decent country. If only journalism malpractice were a thing we’d be in far better shape, and the hostilities of our nation wouldn’t be so rampant. We can turn this around, we just need to try.