In the coming days, many of us will be spending time with family and close friends. You might find yourself in a house with FOX News on the TV, or you might find yourself in the company of a family member who likes to talk about the “truth” coming from FOX. You could also be with folks who understand the damage FOX does, but have not heard about this campaign. Any of these could be a great opportunity to talk about why you do not watch FOX and why you are part of the movement to get it turned off in public places.
There’s no need to be confrontational. The person you are talking with may not be receptive to what you have to say and that is OK. But you might be surprised. This is about sharing your concerns and beliefs, and hearing the thoughts of someone you love. When people are approached respectfully by someone they like and trust, it creates space for them to think and change.
Here are some pointers:
1.) Remain calm. The point here isn’t to start an argument. It is to share information. Even though some people may be hostile to what you have to say, keeping your cool can help defuse tense situations and make even skeptics receptive to what you have to say.
2.) Just the facts. We are often tempted to use inflammatory language when describing FOX News. For example we may describe them as being “evil” or “racist”. But think of the impact that this language might have on someone you are trying to win over to your point of view. Does the fact that they watch FOX News make them “evil” or “racist”? Better to stick to the facts by describing what FOX News does by stoking racial fear, helping to spread dangerous conspiracy theories, and distorting the truth. You can refer to the flyer “The Case Against Fox” for a few examples of what Fox News does, and the impact of their actions.
3.) Listen to what others have to say. If you want to be listened to, then you should also be willing to listen to others’ perspectives. If they state something untrue, you can and should offer facts to correct the record when you can but not until after they’ve finished their thought. And remember, the point is not to get into an argument or even prove that you’re correct. It’s to share your point of view.
4.) Offer more information. If the folks you talk to are interested in learning more about the campaign, just have them check out TurnOffFox.org. They can sign up for the campaign at that website.
The holiday season provides a unique opportunity to help more people understand what Fox is, how it poisons national discourse, and what role everyday people can play in stopping the damage.
After you have these conversations (even with those who already understand the issue), we would love to hear how they went. Tell us about it by clicking the link below:
Thanks and Happy Holidays!
— James, Gabriel, William, Dani, Natasha, and the rest of the TurnOffFox.org team
December 23rd, 2010