Separating 'the wheat from the chaff'

| 09 Aug 2019 | 02:43

    Social media certainly has been a technology that has changed how we share information.

    It has been viewed by some as a positive and by some as a negative, especially in light of the horrific shootings in El Paso and Dayton.

    As a tool to keep people informed or to discuss local issues it generally is a positive addition to our traditional outlets, such as our local papers or community channel 21.

    Sometimes, however, postings at first glance are taken as gospel when in fact they are simply opinions accepted as truths.

    This is not a new phenomenon. As far back as the birth of our nation, Federalists and Republicans fought to determine the form of government our country should embrace. Penny papers printed scandalous stories with each publication trying to outdo the others.

    Perhaps this is where the phrase “Don’t let facts get in the way of a good story!” got started.

    Thankfully today we have so many media outlets that allow us, as citizens of this great nation, to be as informed as we can be, from local issues to international issues and to ascertain what’s real or not.

    Hopefully, we will use them all to separate the “wheat from the chaff."

    Long may the First Amendment live.

    Michael P. Sweeton

    Warwick Town Supervisor