It happens every time. A terrible event happens, and despicable conspiracy theorists/propaganda agents respond by spreading terrible lies. It’s happening right now with the survivors of the Parkland shooting, a concerted effort to discredit anyone who criticizes the status quo by lying about the event.
Some students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School immediately took to social media calling on President Donald Trump and Congress to do something about guns and calling out commentators like Fox’s Tomi Lahren for saying now wasn’t the time to talk about guns. David Hogg, a student journalist who interviewed students on lockdown during the shooting, made several TV appearances demanding leaders take action. Another student, Emma Gonzalez, called out the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the legislators who do its bidding. Melissa Falkowski, a teacher at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, went on CNN calling on Congress to do more to “to end gun violence, to keep our kids safe.” Lori Alhadeff, whose 14-year-old daughter was killed, screamed at President Trump on CNN to “do something.” Student survivors are organizing a march on Washington D.C..
And now, Parkland survivors are targets for fake news campaigns, conspiracy theories, harassment and doxxing. Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones has already suggested that the entire shooting is a false flag, which implies that all of the survivors are actors in an elaborate hoax. As survivors speak up, there are already attempts to attack and discredit them individually.
There are tells that let you know these sources are lying to you. These words are dead giveaways: False flag and Crisis actor. You see someone babbling about that, they’re simply awful, dishonest, crazy people. Another giveaway is when they start piecing together photos of the victims or the crime scene and try to match them to other photos they’ve crudely googled to pretend that the actual victims were actually in Hawaii or something, when all they’ve demonstrated is that people resemble other people. Just shut them down.
There are some people/sources that have negative credibility.
Fox & Friends
Anyone with the last name “Trump”
And many more. One additional problem, though, is that Twitter has become the perfect propaganda machine — anyone can manipulate it to automate broadcasting thousands of tweets promoting the lies invented by other disinformation agents, masking their origin and making sound like they have a broad base of support.
This story is being run by "Gateway Pundit".
The first 10 accounts to retweet this story tweeted 42,654 times collectively in January. This is 1375 tweets a day.
Aka automated/contributing to computational propaganda. Being run to smear a kid who is mad he got shot at in school pic.twitter.com/5xP9erj58p
— Molly McKew (@MollyMcKew) February 21, 2018
Information has become a tool to be twisted and manipulated by the right wing. We should be afraid. This is how democracies fall.