Friday, May 3, 2013

Friday B.S. Roundup ~ May 3, 2013

Today I'm going to limit this to just one piece of bullshit making the rounds because it's a biggie. It's also new so I'm going to provide a little more detail for you to share in the hopes of stopping it in its tracks. HAHAHA! Like that will happen. This is just the sort of over-blown paranoia that certain folks feed on and love to share far and wide.

Pentagon May Court Martial Soldiers Who Share Christian Faith

A writer on Breitbart, that stellar example of journalistic integrity (read that in sarcasm font), made this claim earlier this week:
President Barack Obama’s civilian appointees who lead the Pentagon are confirming that the military will make it a crime--possibly resulting in imprisonment--for those in uniform to share their faith. This would include chaplains—military officers who are ordained clergymen of their faith (mostly Christian pastors or priests, or Jewish rabbis)--whose duty since the founding of the U.S. military under George Washington is to teach their faith and minister to the spiritual needs of troops who come to them for counsel, instruction, or comfort.
He mentions a statement released to Fox News which links to this article written by Todd Starns, a Fox News contributor. He then goes on to quote a retired lieutenant general's comment made on Fox and Friends, another source of unbiased "news". Ha! And guess what this retired lieutenant general's current position is? Executive Vice President of the Family Research Council. Yet another layer of bullshit mountain.

So, are you getting suspicious about the veracity of this one yet? You should be. I did a little quick research back on Wednesday and the first three or four pages of Google entries consisted solely of right-wing bloggers and "news" sources, each of which linked back to the Breitbart article. Every. Single. One. Despite the claim that the Pentagon had released a statement to this effect, not a single source linked to that supposed statement. None. Not a one.

See, that's when red flags go up for me. One of these days I'm going to write a post outlining my method for researching this sort of stuff, what I look for, and how I determine credibility. But suffice it to say that when Breitbart is the only source there's a good chance it may qualify for one of my Friday B.S. Roundups.

By Thursday, Sean Hannity had climbed aboard the crazy train:

Today it's fairly easy to find articles refuting this story, although it's not likely that anyone inclined to share the original will take the time to look. They've already convinced themselves that anyone in the military who dares whisper the name of Jesus is going to be locked up. But just in case you'd like to attempt to dispel this lie, here are some links for you:

Pentagon Refutes Reports of Anti-Christian Policies

Military says no court martials for sharing faith

Pentagon: No, we won't court martial Christians who talk about their religion

Fox Falsely Claims Obama Administration leading "Christian Cleansing" of Military

Of course, predictably, many of those sources who were screaming about this a couple of days ago are now claiming that the Pentagon is "back-pedaling" on the issue. Yep, that's the way to handle it. Make some outrageous claim and then when the facts come out just claim that your side "won" this battle and made the bad guys go slinking off in defeat. It's little wonder that people who get their news from these sources are confused, ill-informed, and forever up in arms over the latest "outrage". I'd like to think that there is hope for at least some of them to figure out that they are pawns in a game of ratings and that is why I do what I do. Yeah, I'm the eternal optimist so don't burst my bubble. Just go forth and share the truth.


Lesa McMahon said...

Oh. Wow. I can't believe anyone would believe such bullshit. I'm amazed by the sheeple. I truly am.

Deanna said...

Me, too. There are enough real things to care about that I just don't get the outrage over misinformation.