Sunday, July 25, 2010

Truth or Dare

Last night, rumors circulated all around the Internet that two ranches in Laredo, Texas had been overrun by a Mexican cartel. It appears that many elements of the story may actually have been rumor, and many believe the entire incident was nothing more than a hoax. Although it's apparent that there was violence in the area yesterday, the specific nature and details of that violence remain unconfirmed.

The entire event bothers me for a couple of reasons. First, it is entirely believable that such an incident could in fact occur and that the media wouldn't report it, directed not to do so by the local authorities or the federal government. There are legitimate reasons for giving such news only brief attention - fear of revealing critical tactical information, for example. A media blackout, on the other hand, would be entirely unacceptable; this is in fact what the rumors of the alleged event stated had happened. And obviously, there are many people who believed this could have been the case. The last presidential election and the events which have taken place since have completely destroyed much of the credibility the press once possessed. Simply put, the public by and large does not trust the media to report the facts.

The other thing that bothers me about this is the alacrity with which so many accepted the incident as a hoax. If the events of the past three years have taught us anything, it should be that we don't stand a chance of achieving our goal by attacking each other. United we stand, divided we fall. While most people were simply concerned at the serious nature of the story, there are a few who rather viciously attacked their “friends” for being so gullible as to fall for a trick likely perpetrated by the left. By taking such a position, these people give the impression that we should all just shut up and sit down for fear of being ridiculed. That mindset is a great deal of the reason we are in the situation we face today.

There are very few journalists in our country today who are regarded as trustworthy. In a political atmosphere rife with the tension of corruption, citizens are forced to acknowledge that if we want the facts, we're going to have to ferret them out ourselves. Additionally, we're going to have to set aside our innately human fear of being ridiculed. Does this mean we should report something as news without having verified the surrounding facts? Of course not - but we're going to have to be willing to work hard and research quickly. And perhaps most importantly, we must fix firmly in our minds the reason we're doing this. Not for recognition or profit, we are doing this to save our country.

Ronald Reagan said, "There is no limit to what a man can do or where he can go if he doesn't mind who gets the credit." This same sentiment applies to ridicule; you can accomplish anything when you don't mind being laughed at if you fail. If we are to be successful in restoring this Republic, we need to lay aside dreams of glory and fears of ridicule. I can only speak for myself, but I'm in.
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