The United States and it’s mass media outlets have a problem in identifying and reinforcing the truth. We have many manifestations of this problem: 1) Many Americans including highly educated and famous people do not believe in science and health professionals, or their vaccines despite over 700,000 deaths from COVID. 2) Many Americans believe more in a lying conman than the American voting system or the FBI; despite mountains of evidence of long term corruption by Trump. 3) Republican political strategy is increasingly reliant on comfortable lies like Critical Race Theory being taught in K-12 schools, or January 6th insurrectionists were just tourists. If Americans do not start to wake up to the truth and act on it we risk that Wiley Coyote moment realizing we are over a cliff about to fall.
Recent reports from US intelligence agencies say that Konstantinos Kilimnik was a Russian agent who received information from Paul Manafort that helped Russia interfere in the 2016 election. Due to the polarization of our media and politics some Americans are outraged that a former president and his campaign collaborated with a foreign attack; others (typically Republicans) will pretend it never happened while lying about people they don’t like. Foreign attacks on our country will continue and escalate as long as we are too busy fighting each other to deal with outsiders. I hope we can become a nation where politicians cannot hide from the truth by going on Fox or other right-wing outlets and lying. Let’s pray that American reverence for the truth will return and we can build a greater future for ourselves on solid ground.
It has become a national defense issue that the citizens of our country cannot agree on basic facts. Putin and the Russians have been observed by the world dominating America under the Trump administration without any observed punishment. Other countries can see that Americans can easily be pitted against one another because some watch Fox and others watch NBC, ABC, etc. When you observe clear lies being spread by mass media boycott the sponsors and spread the word. The truth is the strength of America if we can figure out what it is, and not allow liars to divide us.
We are living in a time when half of Republicans say they believe Trump won the election and that Antifa assaulted the US Capitol building. Americans listened to a president who made wearing a mask a political issue; and more people died. People in Texas are living with the results of buying lies. The harsh winter storm was unusual, but is expected to be an increasing occurrence in our climate changed world. The damage the storm did to Texas infrastructure was made much worse because the state government sold the idea that business knows best. Business does know what is best for profits, and that is a good thing in a market economy. It is the government’s job to harness the market to work for the people and not against them. Regulations do not hurt us if they are developed with truth and transparency. America has suffered from the triumph of lies, and we must regulate social media and mass media so that they do not become the tools of our destruction. A media system that is accountable for lies and the damage they cause is not a threat to free speech, but a bulwark for it. Americans can handle opinions that are clearly delineated and supported by facts; but the facts cannot become opinion. Research and contact your legislators about regulating media so that the lies do not lead to more death, or the destruction of our republic.
Americans need to work to reclaim the belief that we are the land of the free and home of the brave. Conspiracy theories pit Americans against their government and each other. Americans assaulted the Capitol based on lies and appear to be fools, something that enemies and allies have to place into their calculations when they think of the United States. Americans do not see themselves as brave. We see Republicans fearful of congress people who claim Jewish lasers started large forest fires in California, and that documented school massacres were faked. Courage is repeatedly seen in short supply as lies are preferable (in mass media like Fox and One America) to the truth. Freedom relies on the truth to exist, but the example of Trump shows that Americans are extremely tolerant of corruption and lies from right-wing ideologues. The right wingers voice a steady stream of violent threats and it is a matter of time before threats to freedom force more security checks, fences, and armed guards. We will all have to be brave and vote to confront fascist terrorism and bullying if we want to stay free.
The calendar shows that we are in a new year, but it feels like 2020 continued after the sacking of the US Capitol. America has put itself through a lot with bad decisions and lies taking the country to the brink of disaster. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn in soon providing new direction and hope to millions of Americans. Meanwhile, millions of other Americans believe that evil cannibals are taking over the government, the country is being overrun by minorities, and their savior has been removed from the power. Our country has been turned against itself by the love of power and money while mass and social media companies knowingly spread lies that created havoc to gain audience. We have become addicted to having everything our way including “reality”. America’s challenge going forward is to make the truth widespread, and lies shameful or at least unprofitable. The United States has been a beacon for democracy and human rights around the world; now the light has gone out and we are an unstable country. I am hopeful that the Biden-Harris administration will have the support to make truth normal, to turn the lights in our hearts and souls back on. The struggle between good and evil is eternal; America on the right side of history is relatively recent, our strength is the truth.