Inquiring minds around the globe want to know what exactly constitutes an alternative fact. When questioned about a statement made by the Trump Administration, Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump, declared an untruth to be an alternative fact. Most people understand a fact to be something that has really occurred or is actually correct that can be fact-checked and backed up with evidence. However, Conway has introduced to the world a new concept, which poses the question, “What is an alternative fact?”
On Saturday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that Trump has the “largest audience to ever witness an inauguration — period — both in person and around the globe.” Chuck Todd, host of “Meet the Press” described that claim as a falsehood. Conway claimed Todd blew things out of proportion by calling it a falsehood when Sean Spicer simply rendered an alternative fact. Todd, refusing to accept that as logical, fired back by saying:
Alternative facts are not facts. They are falsehoods.
Is there such a thing as an alternative fact? It seems that these are statements offered using word manipulation such as a logical fallacy. This could be information that includes a flaw in reasoning. They are like tricks or illusions of thought and are often used by politicians and the media to sneak in falsehoods in order to deceive others.
While many are puzzled and even offended that Conway would attempt to introduce a concept of falsehood, it appears that Trump’s team has become extremely fluent in this type of dialogue. Unfortunately, Trump himself has rendered many incomplete thoughts in order to manipulate less motivated people. Therefore, the idea of alternative facts are not new; instead, the public now has a name in which to identify this ideology.
Prior to the newly introduced concept, many non-supporters failed to understand why Trump followers were not bothered by the many lies he told. Face it; many of his falsehoods have been blatant and easily proven within seconds. Others may not have been outright lies, but truths stretched so far that Trump ended up flip-flopping on his own positions. In the age of Google, these are so easy to determine. One person described Trump’s method of deception as follows:
The ‘con man’ description is short for “confidence man”, and it means that the con man tricks you into having ‘confidence’ in him, by being absolutely sure of everything, and never admitting he is wrong. When caught in a lie, he bombastically attacks the person who caught him and insists even more vehemently that he is right. Trump has been doing this all along.
While celebrated as a rebel without a cause, Trump is, in fact, a skillful hypocrite and proficient liar, although not a restrained one. His hypocrisy recognizes no boundaries in his pursuit of more power. While Spicer’s declaration that the media faked low attendance does not stack up against the evidence including videos, photos, and public transport figures, it does indeed match up to the concept of alternative facts.
As one who soars in his contempt for the quotidian, Trump and his administration will continue to strengthen the divide which heavily exists in America. What is an alternative fact? Anyone claiming to be a lover of the truth would have to fall in line with Todd’s resolve that identifies alternative facts as falsehoods.
Opinion by Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
USA Today: Trump aide Conway: Spokesman Spicer used ‘alternative facts’
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