In a class at MU, we learned about authorship as it pertains to the Scriptures. This was in response to common questions about the authority of the Bible. I found the whole topic incredibly interesting; for one thing, it carried a few philosophical implications for other areas of life.
On Facebook the other day, I voiced my frustration with the shared photos and posts that had been popping up lately. Apparently the actor Morgan Freeman had strong words to say about the reasons why the shooting in Connecticut happened. There was even a note left by one of the victims thanking her dad for loving her before she was gunned down at Newton. In non tragedy related posts, Ben Stein had strong words to say about Christmas (and how you needed to pass the message along to others). What was the big deal and why was I frustrated?
None of these posts were true.
The words attributed to Morgan Freeman actually came from a guy named Mark in Vancouver; his friends decided it would be funny to try and get his post to go viral by attributing it to someone famous. The note by the young girl was written by some random twitter user in search of retweets. Ben Stein’s strong words on Christmas were a partial quote but the majority (including the urging to share the post) was added by other people after the fact. The common response to this error of authorship being revealed is: “It doesn’t change the truth of it” or even “I don’t care who said it – it’s still good”.
This is a problem. As my mom once told me, “Even a little bit of poop ruins the brownies.”
I’m not sure why there is so much acceptance towards supporting a misquote. It doesn’t matter that the post has good things to say *this time*. Making a habit of accepting anything you read without looking into who actually said it is like poop in brownies – it still ruins it all in the end.