BY SHARON MARTIN
It is no secret that I am a social justice liberal, whatever those words mean to you. I support Hillary Clinton. I won’t vote for Republicans; I believe the party apparatus keeps dissenters in line, and I disagree with too much of the GOP Party Platform.
That doesn’t mean I want news that slants every story my way.
If you browse Facebook, you’ve probably seen the picture of Laura Bush and the heading that she supports Hillary Clinton. Read the article. The former First Lady never says she supports Secretary Clinton. She doesn’t support Trump, but that doesn’t automatically make her a Hillary supporter.
Don’t make up misleading headlines … even if you think they’ll please your readers!
There are social liberal sites that I don’t even bother to read any more, despite the fact that I support the same causes they do. The headlines aren’t accurate. They use politically charged words when the facts are all we need.
That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be adding two and two to get four. Look at good investigative journalism, even if it doesn’t seem to be about politics, then make your own connections. Think critically.
For example, did you see the piece about Saudi Arabia on Frontline? Did you make the connection between their religious police who brutally enforce their own personal brand of Sharia Law and your Muslim-hating uncle who wants our laws to enforce Old Testament justice?
Your uncle votes, and if he’s like mine, he votes for the guy who calls himself a law and order conservative. Find out what that means. If you don’t, these self-styled Christian patriots can turn the U.S. into a Christian version of Saudi Arabia.
Your uncle searches online for opinion pieces and outright lies to support his personal beliefs. He then passes them on. If you try to argue with him, his lies become a thread on your Facebook page.
Search for the truth, but before you spread it, make sure it is the whole truth.
Know your biases.
Use common sense and tools like PolitiFact and Snopes.
There are benefits of sticking to the truth and avoiding politically charged language. One is that you may be able to find common ground with folks on the other side of the political divide.
– Sharon Martin lives in Oilton, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer