In "This Article Won't Change Your Mind," Julie Beck examines why people resist information that conflicts with their beliefs: "In these charged situations, people often don't engage with information as information but as a marker of identity. Information becomes tribal."
• Analyze Beck's findings by applying them to a real-world situation. Examine one or more situations where "information becomes tribal."
• Then Respond. Add to the ongoing conversation by stating your position on this issue. What do the responses that you observe show you about Beck's conclusions?
Audience: As with the previous paper, you will decide which type of reader you want to address. Again, it is important to think about the person who needs to hear your position on this topic. Unlike the last assignment, this time you will be writing to a reader who is relatively new to this topic. Your audience will nor have read Beck's text and will likely nor be familiar with the terms and concepts associated with her argument. This means that it is up to you to clearly, accurately, and respectfully present Beck's ideas in your paper. This will involve providing clear definitions of the following terms and concepts:
o cognitive dissonance
o selective exposureJsclective learning
o motivated reasoning
o particularized tout
Research: This assignment requires some research:
• To respond to this prompt, you will need to "test out" Beck's ideas in a real-world context. Do people react to information in the way she describes? If so, is it for the reasons she suggests? To do this. you will need to idattify real-life examples of people responding to facts they arc presented with and observe their reactions.
There are so many people that fall victim to believing in fake stories even when the facts presented despite the stories. The question is usually why? Why do they insistently continue to believe in the fake stories when there is evidence proving the contrary? History relates the situation to early human survival. There was a high dependency on social ties in order to foster cooperation between people and thus tis led to people insistently holding on to their tribal beliefs and soon that became a habit that was passed down to the coming generations. Beck seeks to caution people against such thinking habits and also defer people to believe in the truth that is presented with facts. Beck’s “This article won’t change your mind” seeks to attract all audience especially those who stubbornly belief in fake stories to start believing in the truth.
There are so many that follow leaders of different sects especially those on religious cults unquestioningly. More to just following, they will go on to defend the presenters and the preachers of the fake disapproved news so as to avoid cognitive dissonance with the presenters of the news. This is due to the fact that they experience psychological tension when they try to think about two incompatible thoughts. Thus, they ignore the real truth that is presented with deep evidence and insistently hold on to their beliefs so as to avoid the uncomfortable state of mind. This mostly happens to a person (s) whose belief in inextricably linked to the person’s identity or the perception he or she has of the world. Thus, it becomes easier to convince themselves that what they know or believe to be truth is the actual truth. This happens to every single person regardless of low or high IQ. For the longest time, people held on to the belief that HIV/AIDS was a curse of the immoral people. The bible alludes to a disease that would kill people in masses due to immorality and the message got preached in many versions and thus created various truths (Becks, BYU Women’s Conference 2011 1).
More to that, there was the believe that it was a taboo to become an adultery or generally immoral. Hence, HIV/AIDS become a curse that people could ‘contract via all means regardless of sexual interactions’. Many believed that sharing of the smallest things such as cups would make the negative members become infected with the virus. Due to wrong perceptions about the viral disease, a stigma grew around it. So many people that suffered from the disease kept quiet about it and many died from lack of proper attention and medical care that they needed due to the fact that they kept their conditions silent. More to that, most of the people who found themselves sick with the disease ended up committing suicide from fear of judgement and scorning by their friends, families, religious leaders and even perfect strangers. Though slowly people are gaining awareness surrounding the truth of the viral disease there is still a long way to go to reach out to every members perception especially those that suffer from tribal and wrongful religious beliefs (Samlo 1).
Beck also traced the insistence on believing in such theories to the fact that people who belief in the fake news often surround themselves with people who share the same beliefs. This is related to the fact that the psychological desire to be with one’s belief becomes easier to depend on than trying to change from one perception to the other. This makes it easier for people to protect themselves from experiencing the difficulties that change presents. The way that people react to the truth shows how prepared they were to believe in it or not. Having social support seems reliable to them than knowing and even more accepting the truth. In the waking shock waves of al-Shabaab terrorist attacks, many youths got radicalized using religion as the major tool (Samlo 1).
The assailants presented falsified truths about the Quran that presented revenge and killings as a way to retaliate against their enemies or people that belief in their enemies. This saw many youths get recruited into the terrorist group between the early 2000s to date. The youth present a young target physically fit combat army for the group. At the same time, there is much they know about the religion and the book that they refer to understand Mohammad and his ways as well as how to get along with fellow believers and more so other different religious communities. Therefore, making them believe in tailored and doctored facts is easier as opposed to reaching out to an older age group. This led to the series of attacks that have seen many economies nearly crumble and many lives lost and it has proven much more difficult to bring the group to a complete halt due to the continuous training that continues to happen using radicalized youths of many societies (Becks, The facts on why facts alone cant fight false beliefs 1).
Beck also suggested to the fact that motivated reasoning and the search for information, makes one’s beliefs seemingly appear to be the truth as it serves as a cognitive dissonance that is often used as a tribal method for justifying a one’s values or even lifestyle. Leaders like trump and often than note the famous Rap Musician Kanye West have been known to create twitter tirades to continuously argue of how the media often than note make unfair news about them. They have consistently held on to their beliefs as the only truth that is the truth and any other suggestion that is contrary to that being false news despite the evidence that has been provided for the same. Trump in the past was quoted to make degrading messages in reference to the female gender whereas Kanye has recently been quoted making harsh and harmful comments towards the black race and the black community’s suffering in the past years when then they experienced limited freedoms and harsh slavery conditions (Taubenbergehk 1).
After Shaw arrived at the siddha yoga meditation center in New York at his vulnerable point in life, he found the yoga to be good and beneficial as he got more and more involved in it after everything else had seemed to fail. He believed so much in the yoga and not because it was the only type of Yoga that could help but because his first feeling after the exposure made him drawn to it. For this he travelled to India where he started to the bottom at the Gurumayi organization and grew to a seemingly good position. Because of the believe that he had in Gurumayi, even after the New York expose happened, he stuck on believing that what he knew and who he had seen Gurumayi as is the person she is. He decided that the expose reality wasn’t the truth and thus he decided to believe in the particulate truth that he had created. This often happens to family members like siblings who at most time may deny the better truth of the other so as not to get hurt and also not to change as change is a difficult path in life (Becks, The facts on why facts alone cant fight false beliefs).
The has been countess facts related to smoking among which is the fact that they cause cancer. Those addicted to smoking love to know of the truth but they rather ignore the said facts and continue smoking. If the adverts ran on tv, internet and radio tend to support the argument, they can switch them off and stick to their thoughts that they can continue smoking. They tend to convince themselves that if they don’t believe in the said truths, then they can’t face the repercussions. This is referred to as selective exposure (Becks, The facts on why facts alone cant fight false beliefs 1).
Arguments tend to reoccur when people argue a set of facts as to whether they are real or not. In the face of such argument most tend to walk away while others just quarrel. This is mostly evident in political rallies and also in the courts of law. The plaintiffs and defendants argue as to who presenting the real facts. However, only the convincing party tends to motivate the jury to vote in their favor. This is referred to as motivated reasoning. In it, people tend to convince themselves that they are right in their believes and therefore they avoid, ignore, devalue, argue and forget those that contradict in their beliefs (Taubenbergehk 1).
The article is quite effective in the incorporation of multimodality. This is due to the fact that Becks initial point suggests to the fact that is mostly common and true to the fact that even when presented with the factual truths, most people will pass by and listen or read the truth and walk away. This is almost similar to staring at the mirror and seeing a huge smudge of dirt and walking away without cleaning it despite knowing that its there. The second is more real as most people continue to belief in wrong leaders especially politically for various reasons and most based on tribal grounds even when he or she doesn’t present any strategic goals that seek to change his area of command or stewardship. It can be described as some sort of party polarization. Often than not, even I have fallen victim to such views and perceptions and held on to it for the fear of admitting that my initial belief isn’t the real and factual truth that I need to be brazenly depending on. More to that, with the world globalizing in terms of sales of services and products, there is a lot of competition presented and variety of goods and services offered to the consumers. Therefore, there are less and less people and corporations that can be trusted. Therefore, it becomes easier to believe in something that many people belief in as they are comfort in masses than riding a solo ride that is scarier and places one at a vulnerable point in life. This has been my go-to thought when it comes to purchasing skin care products. I tend to rely more on the reviews of people using the product even when there are scientific facts that deter the “truths” presented on some of the products.
This proves that Beck’s allegations couldn’t be further from the truth and sadly, more and more people are and continue to be victims of fake news for the fear of judgement, vulnerability and refusal to accept failure.
Becks, Julie. "BYU Women’s Conference 2011." 2011. The church of Jesus Christ of Later - Day Saints Organization. Document. 23 July 2018.
—. "This Article Wont Change Your Mind." 13 March 2017. The Atlantic. Document. 23 July 2018. <https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/03/this-article-wont-change-your-mind/519093/>.
Samlo. "Sketch of, “This Article Won’t Change Your Mind,” by Julie Beck." 4 September 2017. Rampage. Document. 23 July 2018.
Taubenbergehk. "“This Article Won’t Change Your Mind” Author’s Argument Sketch." 5 September 2017. Rampage. Document. 23 July 2018.
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