What is propaganda? It is a form of psychological manipulation used to bring people to believing and feeling what another person wants them to "know" and experience.
We think of propaganda as something only governments and political groups are involved in. That's not true. Anyone who feels a need to promote a lie may turn to propaganda. Propaganda techniques provide a means for getting people to believe something that is not true, without regard to the actual, factual evidence.
Those who promote evolution are major users of propaganda. Climate change is another one. Atheists use propaganda techniques to convince people the Bible cannot be trust. And, yes, some people who call themselves Christians use propaganda techniques.
“You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.” ― Robert A. Heinlein
Christianity is about truth. Yes, there are people who use the guise of Christianity to enrich themselves by deceiving others. And there are true Christians who make mistakes. However, the teaching of the Bible, from beginning to end, is to always be in truth, and that includes researching and discussing the origins of life. Jesus said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." - John 14:6.
Once you are able to recognize propaganda techniques, you can easily identify when someone is trying to deceive you. However, don't become overconfident. Those who are good at deception will be able to deceive you, even when you are alert and know it is coming. However, an ability to recognize propaganda techniques when they are are being used against you, is a a valuable tool.
Here are a few of the most commonly used propaganda techniques used to promote false science:
- Bandwagon (Saying, everybody believes this is true.)
- Get famous people to support your idea Famous people are famous, not necessarily knowledgeable.
- Get lots of people who are recognized as smart (authorities) to support your idea
- Appeal to emotions, not facts (argumentum ad passiones). This is the most common way Christians are led to follow false teaching about God.
- Ad-hominim attacks (Disparage those who disagree with you. For example, "Those who believe the Bible are dims we are the brights.")
- Suppress the opposition. (Those university professors who disagree with you loose their jobs.)
- Lies that are repeated enough will be believed
- Category error (More info)
- Change definitions... prove something is true using one definition of a word, then change the definition of the word and declare it is still true. The word "Evolution" is used this way.
How Can You Protect Yourself From Propaganda?
Some propaganda is easy to spot. Other forms of propaganda can be hidden and very difficult to spot. Your foundation is always scripture. Do what the Bereans did, and test everything against scripture.
The #1 sign there is a problem: When those promoting an idea or belief say something like, "98% of scientists believe such and such" (bandwagon), you know there is a problem. We see this with climate change, for example. The claim is made that 98% of the scientific community say man-made climate change is a major problem. When you see numbers like that you know it is a hoax. It is impossible to get 98% of any group to agree on anything. In addition, it does not matter how many people agree something is true, the question remains... is it true?
Another sure sign of propaganda is when one side starts personally attacking the people on the other side. These are called ad-hominim attacks. They typically involve regular and on-going name calling, and degrading descriptions of the opponents of a certain position, typically to the point of destroying their careers and lives. This is a sure sign that those doing this do not have strong enough evidence supporting their position, such that they can convince those in opposition to change their minds based on the facts. Additional Info
The most common way to support evolution is to change the definition of the word "evolution" in the middle of the conversation. This is called an equivocation fallacy. The person supporting evolution will say, "The evidence supports evolution. Everyone can see it. We see new species arising all the time." (A new species is variation in an organism that is not able to breed with the original organism.) Bible believing Christians agree this is true. Living things change, and new species do develop. This is called the "Special Theory of Evolution." BUT, then they will say, "There it is. Proof of evolution." They have now changed the definition of "evolution" to be that of the "General Theory of Evolution." The General Theory is defined as "all the living forms in the world have arisen from a single source which itself came from an inorganic form." When the word "evolution" is used it is most commonly being used in this sense, and there is zero proof the General Theory is true, or even possible. Since the evolutionist has not made a distinction between the Special Theory and the General Theory, conflating those two terms, they are able to assert there is proof "evolution" (General Theory) is true, without any actual proof that it is true.
OTHER EXAMPLES OF LOGICAL FALLICIES
Propaganda often uses logical fallacies. A logical fallacy is an error in reasoning. While it may sound good, and seem to be a powerful argument in favor of the premise being supported, it actually does not provide any support at all. Here are some common logical fallacies used to support evolution.
Appeal to Authority
Asserting that a proposition is true because a valid authority says it is true, without any supporting evidence. Claims, such that evolution is true, require evidence and experts can, and are often wrong.Additional Details
Appeal to Ignorance
This is the most common method atheists use to support their belief there is no God. They will say, "No one has been able to show me proof that God exists." All this means is that they don't know something. It's not proof God does not exist. It is simply a statement saying, "I am ignorant concerning the existence of God." Additional Details
When a conclusion is based on the original assumption, it is called a circular argument. We hear circular arguments a lot when talking about evolution. In fact, the main rule of evolutionary science requires the use of circular arguments. What is that rule? Only naturalistic explanation are allowed. In particular, evolution is the only answer allowed when talking about the origin of life. As evolutionist Richard Lewontin stated, "We can't allow a divine foot i the door." So when evolution is the assumed cause (and the only cause allowed), what result can be expected when studying the origins of life? That it happened through evolution." Additional Details
When someone says, "Everyone believes evolution is true." that is called bandwagon. Even if everyone does believe something, that does not make it true. The point is to know what is true, not what everyone believes is true. Additional Details
I rarely run into a supporter of evolution who correctly understands Christianity and the science supporting Biblical creation. Often their arguments against creation and the Bible are straw-man arguments. I would not say they do this intentionally. It is out of ignorance of what the Bible actually says and ignorance about Biblical creation and global flood. The result is that they present evidence against Biblical creation or God that, in reality, is not opposing a position Biblical creationists actually take. An example would be stating that, "Creationists do not believe animals change." Of course we believe animals change! God has designed the ability to adapt into the life He created. BUT, that adaptation does not result in one kind of organism changing into another kind of organism. Additional Details