There are WhatsApp messages being circulated currently with an extract of one of Archbishop William Goh’s Scripture Reflections. Unfortunately, the reflection extract was taken out of context to favour a cause, agenda or ambition. This same message was circulated earlier in 2017.
The author/s of the original WhatsApp wrote on his/her message that the Archbishop was “very brave” and cannot “tahan”, inferring that the Archbishop was unhappy with the government. Whereas in truth, Archbishop William’s Scripture Reflections did not refer to any one government, rather he wrote about the weaknesses and strengths of the different kinds of government – monarchy, socialism, democracy, etc. (read the complete Scripture Reflection here )
This malicious WhatsApp message is an attempt at distorting the original scripture reflection and is a variation of Fake News. It is not only an un-Christian act against one’s brother, but that it is in violation of the 5th commandment (assassinating someone’s credibility).
One common strategy used by authors of fake news is to first frame the readers mind by composing slanted or sensationalised headlines (or preambles) followed by a selected extract of the original composition. This distorts the original message and its intent. This is one of the more insidious ways people use social media and instant messaging platforms to further their own agendas.
One should always read an article, homily, or message in its entirety, and to seek its source especially if it is an extract. Without context, it is very easy to distort a message. Please help stop the spread of lies by not sharing dubious messages. Thank you.