It’s not “fake news” just because you don’t like the source

A recent news headline about the NRA’s precarious finances really demonstrated the way some people completely shut out any “news” from any source that isn’t right leaning. I check all kinds of news sources every day, and the story about the NRA was mostly carried by left leaning sites. So what? Of course the right leaning sites don’t want to talk about it. But lefty sites dancing on the grave of the NRA doesn’t make it “fake news”. 

Here’s what the NRA said in their lawsuit: 

“…The NRA has suffered tens of millions of dollars in damages based on Defendants’ conduct… Such damages include, without limitation, damages due to reputational harm, increased development and marketing costs for any potential new NRA-endorsed insurance programs, and lost royalty amounts owed to the NRA, as well as attorneys’ fees, legal expenses, and other costs.

….If the NRA is unable to collect donations from its members, safeguard the assets endowed to it, apply its funds to cover media buys and other expenses integral to its political speech, and obtain basic corporate insurance coverage, it will be unable to exist as a not-for-profit or pursue its advocacy mission. Defendants seek to silence one of America’s oldest constitutional rights advocates. If their abuses are not enjoined, they will soon, substantially, succeed.”

I was very disappointed in some of the responses I got on Facebook (FB: The Heidi Harris Show). Many people automatically dismissed it as “fake news” because the link posted was from the New York Post. Not exactly a left-leaning site, at least not politically. Some instantly dismissed it as “fake” without taking one minute to look it up for themselves, or check other sources. 

I read the lawsuit, filed by the NRA against the State of New York, to find the “money quote”, and the press isn’t lying. True, the NRA may be overstating their liquidity problems just for legal purposes. But if they are prohibited from doing business in New York with virtually every insurance company or bank because of Governor Cuomo’s “blacklisting” of the NRA, which intimidates various companies from working with them, that’s a problem.

I’m not going to litigate the case here, but what the NRA stated in the lawsuit was accurately reported by the Press, for the most part. What’s scarier to me is this “cult” of people who automatically dismiss anything from any web site they don’t like as “fake news”. 

I was fired from a radio job last year because I stood up for family values, and most members of the media and various TV outlets were dancing on my grave. I’ve been a wasp at their picnic for years, and they don’t like anyone speaking out for Christian values. I was one of the more high profile people in Vegas doing that, so they were glad to see me go. But that didn’t make it a LIE that I was fired. 

The way some outlets characterized the reason for my termination was largely dictated by their bias, of course. My former employers wouldn’t go on record, so the Press made things up. For example, some claimed I had said gay people should never be able to adopt kids, and I never said that. Nor did I say that gay people can’t be good parents; something else that was falsely attributed to me. The bias of those reporting a story is something everyone has to take into account, but the facts of a situation are facts, and I was fired for saying kids do best with a mom and dad. 

Back to Trump. Yes, most of the Press hate him, and yes, it’s true the left leaners can’t say anything positive about him, ignoring any success he might achieve. However, we cannot nor should we evaluate everything said about President Trump based on WHO said it. That’s some scary territory to live in. A story isn’t true unless Fox or The Daily Caller report it? You don’t even check?

“Consider the source” is an often quoted phrase, and it’s based on common sense. Of course you must always consider where something is coming from and who the “news” benefits, whether it’s an acquaintance spreading gossip or something in the news. The bias of the reporter or news site will always exist, but you must not automatically dismiss bad news when you don’t like the messenger. 

Heidi Harris

 

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