Don't Be Gullible

Gullibility is a failure of social intelligence in which a person is easily tricked or manipulated into an ill-advised course of action. (from Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gullibility).

Definition of gullible: easily duped or cheated (from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gullible)

Other than a long history of animosity between the two countries, ever wonder why Russia picked the US to covertly influence? Why are they trying to influence our politics and societal beliefs?

They’ve been trying to do it for years. In the 1950s, Hollywood was believed to be a hotbed of Russian influence. When I was young, rock music was said to be a Russian plot to corrupt the youth. After Gorbachev softened the rhetoric in the 1980s and the Communist Bloc collapsed, Russia seemed like someone we should be friends with. Two superpowers working together and getting along? How cool would that be?

Putin has reversed most of Gorbachev’s “progress” and Russia has reverted to being our mortal enemy. Rather than risking a nuclear war (although it’s still possible), they’ve taken to bombing the internet with fake news, false assertions, and polarizing posts that Americans are eating up like cupcakes at a kid’s birthday party.

FaceBook is the biggest culprit. Lots of memes come up that may agree with whatever position we hold, and we repost them. No matter what they may claim, we repost them whether we know it’s factual or not. We believe it to be factual, but is it really? How gullible are we?

I was very gullible when I was little. I believed my cousins when they told me that God hated Oklahomans and that’s why he sent so many tornados to Oklahoma. But God loved Texas and whenever there was a tornado there, He’d lift the ground up in the air and let the tornado go underneath it. When our family visited friends in Oklahoma, I was terrified God would hate me for being there and send a tornado to get me. It may sound crazy, but I believed it even though it turned out to be “fake news.” As I aged, I’ve become a little more cautious, and try to not to believe everything I hear and read.

When it comes to posts on FaceBook, I give more credence to original words written by someone I trust than something that’s produced and reproduced. If you write about it, I’ll read your opinion and think on it. I may or may not agree with you, but I’ll give you the time to consider it. But reposted stuff by anyone, I won’t give the time of day to and probably will block, unless it’s something funny or thoughtful on how to be a better person. As far as political opinions, I won’t give the Russians or any other organization I’m not familiar with the satisfaction of passing on their influence. The last thing I want to be is a pawn in someone’s online war.

Be smart, be thoughtful, be responsible when sharing posts on FaceBook. Quit spreading hate, lies, and division. Proverbs 6:16-19 lists the things the Lord hates. The list ends with “A false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among the brethren.”

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