In this current era where we are witnessing great improvement and advancement in information technology, mass media is one of the common in the world today. In the world today, the mass media can inform the citizens of the happenings through various platforms such as the Twitter, Facebook, radios, television sets and even WhatsApp applications. However, the media can give various myths in the attempt to fulfill their self-interests and make the common citizen believe that they exist to provide a service to the community. Interestingly, the media can air their myths ranging from news to advertisement, and one thing that the media is known for is to scare away people. The painful truth is that most of the media outlets exist only to sell their adverts and sell the news that they want the common citizen to hear and know.
One of the myths that are widely broadcasted in the media is that the red meat causes cancer. This is one of the nutrition myths that scare people not to use the red meat (Cottrell, 2011). After all, most of the things that are widely liked and used by the largest percentage of the population can cause cancer. What the media fails to inform people is that red meat poses a cancer risk only to the people with poor diets and lifestyle choices. If an individual decides to maintain good nutrition and health through not smoking, eating vegetables and regular exercises, red meat is nothing to worry about. The truth is that the media exaggerated the effects of red meat on the human body.
The media is known for their manipulative power that makes people do things that they never thought they would do. However, there remains a group of people that are hard to manipulate regardless of the efforts put in by the media personnel. It is very tough and difficult to manipulate a critical consumer of news because they study the alternative perspective and overall views and as a result, they can learn how to interpret events from multiple viewpoints. Moreover, critical consumers of news seek to understand and insight through multiple sources of information and not entirely relying on the mass media.
However, there is a four-step process and steps that should be followed by each single person to qualify to become a critical thinker. First, the person in question should seek to understand the basic agenda of the news story construction. The consumer should keep in mind that the sole purpose of the mainstream is to sell their stories. Secondly, the consumer should be in a position to use knowledge of the logic of news story construction first to deconstruct stories in the news and then to reconstruct them imaginatively with alternative biases and slants (Fisher, 2011). Thirdly, he should learn how to re-define issues access alternatives sources, put events into a historical perspective, notice and assess assumptions and implications. Finally, a critical consumer should learn how to identify low credibility stories by noticing vested interest or passion associated with the content.
There was a time I failed to be a critical consumer of the news when I read in the on the internet that the great Real Madrid football club had swapped for Lionel Messi for a transfer fee of 500 million euros. Excited by the news, I quickly opened the link only to find that they wanted to increase the traffic to their site.
Creating a society that has a rich concept that comprises of the intellectually disciplined process and skillful conceptualization, application, analyzation, syncretization and evaluation of data and f information gathered before implementation is the dream of every leader. Critical thinking is crucial in bringing development and advancement to society.
According to Sumner, the first step in creating a critical thinking society is to make the community members to value critical thinking and all those who practice critical thinking. According to him, critical thinking in society helps to distinguish the characteristics of such community as it puts more emphasis on thinking. Moreover, such a society uses critical thinking as a key to the emancipation of the human brain and mind that guides him on following the right path and distinguishing what to believe and follow when having closely associated alternatives (Willingham, 2007).
Moreover, according to Graham education can play a crucial and important role in ensuring that society has critical thinkers who in turn can gain acceptance and respective from the members of the society and in turn influence others to follow their line of thought. However, education alone is not enough as critical thinkers need the courage to what other people think and say is right to show them an alternative that is better and brings more desirable results
Cottrell, S. (2011). Critical thinking skills: Developing effective analysis and argument. . Palgrave Macmillan.
Fisher, A. (2011). Critical thinking: An introduction. Cambridge University Press.
Willingham, D. T. (2007). Critical thinking. American Educator.