Can I trust the news I read or hear? Can you?

Try my rating system.

1. Start with coverage of first ladies and their projects. Michelle Obama advocated for school lunch improvement. I heard both pros and cons and saw pictures of her with children weeding a vegetable garden. Laura Bush, what did she do? I didn’t hear about the Bush family success with AIDS in Africa until recently. Melania Trump? She wore heels walking to the airplane headed for a hurricane site. If I didn’t follow her on Twitter, I’d know nothing about her Be Best program trips to major cities like Seattle or her consultations with military spouses. Verdict: Politics chooses what to tell me and what to ignore.

2. Ideas from both Democrats and Republicans usually spur reactions by others. Reported Republican ideas may be rebutted by Democrats, who are mostly negative. But if stories quoting Democratic ideas are almost all positive, the verdict is this newspaper or TV site has biased reporting.

3. Opinion pieces can be trickier. I’ve read some that agree with President Donald Trump’s actions, but also point out problems. I’ve never read one against Trump that suggests even a tiny bit of approval for part of his action. Instead, some continue to repeat stories proven false. Verdict: Those in the last group should be out of a job.

Conclusion: The major news media fail my test. I’m stunned that so many seemingly intelligent people haven’t figured it out and think that major media are telling the truth.

N.J. Huss

West Lampeter Township