Hoax Emails – Why o’ Why?

Hoax Emails and the “Christians” Who Send Them:

If you’re like me, your inbox fills up with all these supposedly well meaning spiritual emails forwarded to you by friends and family purportedly from Christian writers….

To read the rest of this article visit the Missionlog Commentary Archive. <>< Andy

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Andy is a full-time inner city missionary and writes this blog. After serving on several short term missions with a Mississauga Baptist Church, he left
corporate sales in 2003 to become an outreach worker to the homeless
with Ekklesia Inner City Ministries — Project 417, in Toronto.
Thousands of church volunteers have joined Andy for “sandwich runs,”
to deliver meals to homeless street people. His mission updates are
available online.  Andy has published articles on faith and justice at
http://christianity.ca/ and designed and maintains the website for Ekklesia Inner City Ministries at project417.com

Life verse: Romans 1:16 – I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it
is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes…

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2 Responses

  1. There are thousands of internet hoaxes out there. Some, totally false – i.e. hypodermic needles fastened to gas pumps to give people aids, some with a “ring of truth” and some based on an actual event, with a certain level of “story telling hyperbole” thrown in.

    Certainly, while there was no “NBC Poll” as SNOPES and others affirm, there WERE polls by CNBC and MSNBC, both with results in a similar statistical range ~85% affirmative, with respect to a question about the use of a reference to God” in a secular format (on money, or in the Pledge of Allegiance).

    I agree folks should be very careful before spreading ANY email rumor, and should never take anything they read ONLINE as fact without thorough corroboration.

    That being said, the forwarding of this message hardly constitutes “lying”, shows no malevolent intent, and in actuality is a fair representation of the public sentiment in a limited framework.

    One needs to be very careful in forwarding “corrections” to the sender (and all those CCd on their message). Perhaps that person will be very embarrassed (based on who else they sent the message to) that “they’ve been had”.

    The other question that comes to mind is whether the person offering the correction is doing so with the right heart, or simply trying to prove their own point.

    Something to think about.

  2. Thanks for your comment D. It realy does empahsize the sorry state of truth out there with the advent of the internet. I’m sorry, but there certainly is a “malevolent” intent in sending hoaxes – regardlesss of the “grain” of truth that may be hidden. Hoaxsters, (liars) specifically compose their frauds to have that “ring of truth” you speak of to promote their own hidden agenda. They purposely base their tales on distorted factual events and borrow dubious statistics from recognized sources like NBC/CBC etc to lend an air of authority to what would otherwise be instantly recognized as “story-telling” hyperbole.

    In the case of the hoax I reported on, the original sender carefully designed their email because they were opposed to the Onatrio legislature and Premier Dalton McGuinty establishing a committee to study the tradition of reciting the Lord’s Prayer in session. Instead of presenting their opinion in a balanced manner, they revealed themselves to be the true “gutless wonder” by using lies instead of facts. Changing statistics even slightly is not hyperbole – it distorts the truth and casts doubt on all data. ( 80% of people don’t trust statistics ; )

    Further, I didn’t refer to “forwarders” of hoaxes as liars – only the original sender / author. The forwarders are merely misguided. I’m clear in my heart as to my point – I receive far too many hoax emails from my Christian brothers and sisters – several a week, with hundreds on the distribution lists. Advising all CC’d is the only way to advise them all that they have in fact, “been had” and make them think twice before they in turn hit the forward email button to hundreds more. The author of the hoax wants unbelievers to “sit down and SHUT UP” in their own words. The truth will never be silent.

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