At the Iron Ink blog, Bret McAtee has a very timely and apposite blog piece called ‘On out-enemying the enemy’. It’s actually Part II, a follow-up to an earlier post.
The title of this post is from the Iron Ink piece, and it’s from a Russian proverb which Pastor Bret quotes: “One word of truth shall outweigh the whole world.”
We live in a truth-starved time, a time which I have called ‘The Age of the Lie’, and I’ve noticed that others have also used similar terms to describe the age we live in. And when the very air we breathe is saturated with the lies of the ‘propaganda machine’ we need to hear the truth, as well as to speak it, though the latter is carrying considerable risks these days.
The blog piece at Iron Ink emphasizes that though we have to combat the many lies which are fed to us daily, we must not resort to lying as a way of countering the propaganda. The old saying ‘fight fire with fire’ does not work here; The truth alone is sufficient to combat the lies.
“Christians don’t need to rely on deception, misdirection or spin. All they need to do is tell the truth. Telling the truth can happen in many ways. It can happen in the context of a logical well structured rational argument but let’s face it… in the age of social engineering and sociological techniques logical and well-structured arguments are typically not going to get it done.”
This is something which I find useful to remember myself, because my preferred method is to rely on rational argument, but I’ve concluded that most people are not so much moved by that kind of approach. Sad to say, many people have not been taught how to think logically or to follow a reasoned argument. Facts and data in our postmodern age are not as effective for a great number of people, especially the young. As Bret McAtee says, emotive approaches seem to speak to more people, and it seems that the left specializes in manipulating emotions, generating fear, indignation and rage (though they accuse us of appealing to fear or ‘hate’, they actually stir up and exploit those feelings themselves). By their use of the complicit media’s dishonest fear-mongering they use images especially to provoke feelings which they then use: think of the image of the drowned refugee child. Or the constant images of the ‘Dreamers’ and their families, and the sob stories about ‘families being torn apart.’ See the image in this story. How is this to be countered? Do we really ‘tear families apart’ by sending parents home to their native land and keeping the ‘anchor babies’ here as hostages or something? Do people really believe that, or is that just part of the lies? Yet people seem unable to question the message.
I agree that we should use images and memes where possible to counter the lies, but lacking a powerful media ally to present
our side the truth, we are at a disadvantage. Still, as the old saying goes, one plus God is a majority. We have to start somewhere.
Letting the constant tsunami of lies go unanswered is not the thing to do. Though as the Iron Ink piece points out, we can’t emulate our enemies’ dishonest tactics but we can’t let their lies go unchallenged, and be passive when we are presented with nonstop lies and false witness.