From the Land of Warlocks and Witches

“What’s that Joe?” Little Ruthie asks her slightly older brother as he holds up a mysterious bottle in the bathroom. Joe answers, “Styling Mousse. It’s made from moose guts.”

Ruthie makes a grimacing face as Joe continues, “And if you spray it on a zombie, it’ll die a painful and lingering death.”

“What’s lingering mean?” Ruthie responds.

“Smelly, like Lingburger cheese,” Joe casually answers.

Ruthie: “Why is cheese so smelly?”

Joe: “It’s so you can tell what you eat in the dark.”

Ruthie: “Why do people eat in the dark?”

Joe: “It’s a tradition in some countries, like Detroit.”

Ruthie: “Detroit’s a country!?”

Joe: “Yeah, and it’s run by witches and warlocks.”

Finally, Ruthie asks, “How do you know all this stuff, Joe?”

“DUH, Ruthie! Have you never heard of the internet?”*

Do we need to grow up?

Out of the mouths of cartoon characters under age seven lies an unfortunate adult problem.

Joe is so casually fabricating nonsense because his story is more fascinating. Plus, it is easier than researching what mousse does for the hair. Or having to dig into a dictionary and find the meaning or spelling of a word. Who needs a map to find a land of warlocks and witches?

Why take time to find answers, truth, and meaning? Should we look at several different sources for news or listen to those more knowledgeable on a subject we know little about?

Educating ourselves to be better informed might improve our wisdom, decisions, and attitudes.

The amount of misinformation spread across the internet continues to be a divisive and explosive detriment to our nation and its citizens. When we accept or embrace an idea without examination, we become victims and not victors.

Today, we have a massive issue with aligning ourselves with what we prefer to believe rather than the truth. Fact is often disappointing and hard to accept.  Truth often resembles nasty cough medicine. It tastes horrible but stops the menacing cough. Taking a dose of truth can rid us of bias, lies, and anger.

Detroit, Russia

The amount of conspiracy theories and bogus ideas is increasing because it is easier to believe a captivating story that aligns with our beliefs. We applaud our foolish wisdom when others think as we do.  The more folks agree with us, the more valid it seems and the more it spreads.

Finally, we become like seven-year-old Joe, who believes Detroit is a country. If Joe then shares his theory with other kids, soon Detroit is in Russia and governed by a tribe of witches and warlocks called “Michigan!”

How do we know where a narrative begins on the internet? We understand that foreign entities and hackers use tactics to separate us. “Divide and conquer” has been a strategy for centuries; the internet just makes it more underhanded.

I am constantly amazed at the number of otherwise reasonable folks falling prey to the fear spread by some unknown expert from somewhere in the open seas of the World Wide Web.

Just give me a reputable newspaper. There is more truth in the newspaper’s comic section than in bizarre stories on social media.

Often, I take a photo of a funny cartoon and send it to my friends first thing in the morning. They don’t subscribe to the paper, and Garfield started my day with a laugh I want to share.

I prefer to read a story backed by an actual event based on facts.  As a matter of fact, give me a state, national, or local newspaper or news website and allow me to discern truth from fiction. I went to school.

Truth or Warlocks?

I write for several local and national newspapers and online publications. Each of their skilled editors is determined to represent honesty, fairness, and open-mindedness.

Through the years, I have yet to see any nefarious schemes or distortions as found in other branches of news outlets and certainly on the internet.

I have stated this before, but I love my fellow citizens enough to say it for the thousandth time: “Do not listen to only what you want to hear!”

It’s akin to reading the Bible.  If you only read “Thou shalt not kill,” you might miss the part “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” We should never choose words from the Bible to validate our ideas but rather study them to learn how to live according to God’s word.

To live an honest life with honest leaders, we must take the time to seek the truth even though it might taste like hair mousse or smell like stinky cheese. We need sound directions to escape from the darkness where warlocks live. And it may take God to return us to Detroit, Michigan, in the land of America.

*One Big Happy by Rick Detorie Sunday 1/21/24

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