Fake News: A World Of Illusions (2)

In Nigeria, the government just does their thing — like owning a TV or radio station —and the people don’t even pretend; they don’t bother pretending that they do not know what’s up. I remember years ago, the former governor of a particular state made sure that people could not just go to the state owned TV or Radio station to say whatever they wanted. If the you were against the Governor, you would have to own your own TV station where you could say whatever you liked against him. You could not say it on the state television station.  The government owned it, and it was the government’s media output. You would have to make plans to use some other station if you’re running against him in an election, because that particular station would only broadcast things that were in support of that government.

So, if you keep watching TV, you’d think that everything you see on it is real.

CNN in the United States is known as ‘Clinton News Network’ by many people. When Obama ran for president the first time, his opponent (John McCain) had a born again, Bible-believing Christian, Sarah Palin, who spoke in tongues, as his running mate (Vice presidential candidate); but you would not even know her or hear about her in the news. They barely said anything about her.

I remember watching CNN during the American election period in 2016 [when Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were the presidential candidates], and over and over again, the media kept playing the negative things about Trump. I’ve never seen such a biased media. It didn’t matter the country: Britain, South Africa, etc., all they had on him was negative, negative, negative. Some people won’t even know this because they are in Nigeria, except they had reasons to know.

Till tomorrow, Trump and the mainstream media in America are totally against each other. He calls them ‘fake news media’. Most of the news that people watch is not on TV [though Nigerians watch TV]. Most people get their news from the internet. Most Americans put on their computers and watch the news on the Web.

There were things that would not go out in mainstream media; like a video of Hilary Clinton slumping and being carried away like she was dead. She went for a rally and was so lost, they carried her away. I watched it. Those kind of things will not be put on TV? And why? The Secret Service officers all around her tried to shield her and block the cameras; but someone was trying to capture it with his phone. They carried her away and it wasn’t even mentioned on TV. No one even talked about it. If Trump did 1 over 100 of what was going on with her, it would be everywhere.

Now, I’m not going into a talk on who was better between Trump and Hillary. All I’m saying is that a biased media is bad.

Why do you think that Nigerians and everyone else seemed to be anti-Trump? Why are you anti-Trump? You think you know why? It’s because that’s all you’ve been told to do — dislike him. You have been shaped according to what you have seen. If you have seen some of the things I saw and known the things I knew before that election, you wouldn’t think the way you did at all. Fortunately, here and there, I have people that I listen to who are Christian sources. They would say things that would make you wonder how what they’re saying is not on the news and why those things are not being broadcasted every few minutes.

Hilary Clinton had something in her ear during the Pre-election Debate and she was being told the answers to give; completely against every law. She had a meeting with the Attorney-General of the nation in a vehicle just before a debate; all sorts of totally illegal things. Her people caused violence in Trump’s rallies; they were paid to do so and there are recordings where they discussed how they were paid to cause violence in Trump’s rallies. They did a whole lot.

The fact that none of it was on CNN tells you that something is fishy. Again, you might be wondering, “How do you know it was real?”

It’s real because the evidence was there clearly. You can watch it yourself that she was so sick that a doctor followed her around, and they would hold her hand and carry something like a syringe to inject her. She had serious health issues. All of these things were happening and somehow they never entered the news. Forget about whether she’s the better person or the wrong person, I’m just saying that it’s obvious that the media was for her and was against Trump. Trump said nasty and stupid things from 2005; they uprooted everything he ever did in his life and replayed it until your ears hurt.

I am telling you all these so that you can know the power of words. Words are powerful, they shape your mind and thoughts. You cannot say that you can’t be influenced by words. Words influence you. Everybody is influenced by words. Anything you keep listening to will influence you. If you hear a lie a thousand times, you will believe it, and if you hear the truth three or five times, you won’t believe it. You can hear something that is radically different from what you’re used to or what you used to know, and if you don’t keep hearing it many times, you can default back to what you used to know. You may even see the evidence of the new knowledge and be wowed, but because you did not stick around long enough and you kept hearing the normal things you’ve always known, you are unable to hold on to the truth that you heard.

It is very hard to let go of whatever you keep hearing even when it’s obvious that it’s wrong. It’s very hard to break out of it. It is said that it takes an average of a certain number of times to hear something before your mind even has a chance of changing. It is not enough to hear something once in a while; you have to hear it much more often before you can change your mind about it.

Strife works like that. You keep hearing something negative about someone; you hear it once, you hear it twice, you hear it five times, if you hear it enough times, you’re going to believe it. You’ll believe it even if it’s a lie. On the internet there are these gory pictures of meat, stories about Chinese fake food, saying that human beings were made into meat, all of that. I think the pictures are said to be from a Chinese horror film, yet people spread it on social media as though it’s something real. The other day, someone sent me a story of how Churchill’s father, who was the Prime Minister of Britain during the Second World War, had helped a young boy who went on later to invent penicillin. The story is flying around, but it’s not true, it’s a lie.

I used to have issues when I was on my secondary school class WhatsApp forum. Someone would post something and I’d look at it, and it takes me about a minute to check 1 or 2 websites that would verify or debunk the post. The websites would tell me when the story started flying around, even where it was formulated. I’d check and crosscheck, and then I’d send it [my findings on the post] back to the group and say “This story is not true, here’s the link,” and some people would say things like “Why you dey defend them?” [Why are you defending them?]. That is, they would rather believe a lie! They just like to say something; and they have no desire to know if it’s true or not. It’s like, ‘Let’s just keep talking [and wee don’t care whether what we’re saying is the truth].’

Pastor Ita Udoh

22nd February 2020
© God’s Lighthouse 2020

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