While going about our normal Common Sense Conspiracy routine of filtering through hundreds of the latest posts, news articles, videos, and propaganda out there on the internet, I noticed an article about the chaos and confusion happening in New York City’s Financial District that is called the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. There is not nearly as much information about this as there should be, but it is starting to become a large enough event that even the media gauntlet has not been able to suppress some information from slipping out. However, the disinformation is as prevalent as the real information, which led me to think about how headlines and wording can make such a stark difference in how we perceive things.
A good example is an article I ran across from our good friends at AboveTopSecret.com. It was one of the top headlines for the hour. It had a provocative headline: U.S. Marines Headed to Occupy Wall Street Movement to PROTECT Protesters. It’s an eye-catcher for sure, isn’t it? Analyzing it, you will see that it draws attention for multiple reasons. First of all, the fact that U.S. Marines might be headed for the protest at all begs you to click on the article. Secondly, the idea that they would be dispatched to PROTECT the movement and not stop it is even more fascinating. Here’s where the deception comes in. This title was cleverly worded to not only make you click on the article, but to click on it with a certain emotion in mind. Perhaps the idea that the troops were protecting our freedom and not trying to stop it excites you, so you click eager to hear a feel-good story for a change. Or maybe it scares you to think that the movement is escalating to the point that military involvement is necessary. In any case, you go in with a preconceived notion.
When you actually enter the article, you learn that the title was deceiving. It turns out a few Marine veterans have banded together and decided to join the protest. These are not active servicemen, and they are not armed. They are not going to PROTECT the protesters, but to protest alongside them as Americans. Once again, the tone of the article makes it sound like there is a vast movement of veterans across the United States all heading for New York City to stand up for freedom. In reality, further investigation reveals that a rather small group of veterans is making the trip to make a stand, but it is far from a movement.
The point of all this is not to criticize the veterans that are participating in this. It’s good to see some of our armed forces retirees to realize that the freedom they have fought for is being confiscated here at home, not abroad. Their stance is commendable, and I there is definitely a school of thought out there (and here) that wishes this article’s tone was correct. We wish there was thousands of veterans latching onto Lower Manhattan to stand with the people they once fought for. And maybe the movement will grow and that dream can be realized. In the meantime, don’t believe everything you read. When you open one of these articles, always remember that everyone has an agenda and is steering you to believe one thing or another, and to sift through to the facts of the matter is the only way to form your own opinion for yourself. Of course, Common Sense Conspiracy will always be around to help you do just that.