Friday, December 23, 2005

Propaganda (Part 3 of 10)

Propaganda is more than lies frequently repeated. Propaganda consists of facts falsely interpreted and actions falsely attributed to unworthy intentions and motives. Propagandists always speak in tones of moral indignation. They reduce trust by identifying a group as a threat to community. They raise the level of suspicion by relentless verbal attacks designed to isolate the group and exclude it from community.

The more prolonged and passionate the rhetoric of the propaganda, the greater the likelihood of violence against the isolated group. Impressionable individuals will be incited to collective action against the perceived "enemy." Perniciously, the reproach of association with the isolated group discourages discerning members of the community from protesting about injustices against the group.

Propaganda is the Pharisee who observed Jesus heal a demoniac and attributed his compassion to the spirit of Beelzebub (Mt. 12:22-37).

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