This Election, Mind the Facts

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Sometimes facts are inconvenient to our political preferences.

I think that deep down, we all know this.

What surprises me, however, is how often we are willing to stay blind to it.

Over the last two weeks, I watched the vast majority of the Republican and Democrat conventions, to include every prime time speech and both nominee’s addresses in their entirety. Throughout the conventions, I kept tabs on what the fact checkers were saying. I wanted to know when the truth was stretched and when the truth wasn’t a factor in a statement at all!

In doing so, I found myself going back and forth between Facebook and Twitter. In that process,  I noticed that FEWER THAN 1% of my Facebook friends follow a nonpartisan fact check organization like FactCheck.org or Politifact!

Given the amount of political discourse I see every day online, I was certain that more of my friends would have an interest in what nonpartisan fact checkers were saying about their candidate’s statements. I had hoped, that at the very least, we were willing to be AWARE of where our candidates were flexible with the truth.

Not so, apparently.

And that doesn’t sit well with me.

How can politics be a force for good when we are more than willing to argue about one side over another when we don’t even know the facts? How can political ideologies be a contest of ideas when we choose to remain blind to the facts that those ideologies are based on?

I’m not here to convince you to vote one way or another (but, please DO vote). I’m not even trying to tell you which channel to watch! You do you.

What I am asking, however, is that you follow a fact checker or two. Who knows, it might help you win a political argument down the line (just kidding, no one ever wins in a political argument).

My favorite is FactCheck.org. You can follow them on Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and via email. Follow them because their mission is to be “a nonpartisan, nonprofit consumer advocate for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics.

Follow them so you will be a more informed voter.

It’s the least you can do.

 

 

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2 comments

  1. […] I can’t see us chalking all the nastiness of the last year or so up to “all is fair in politics” when it’s over, and that worries me. Lately, there doesn’t seem to be a place for cooler heads to prevail, for an understanding of context, for the patience to consider nuance and dare I say it, facts. […]

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  2. […] This Election, Mind the Facts […]

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