It’s not hard to check the source of a news item. The source or sources are either posted with the news item or not. If no sources are posted, it is very likely propaganda only.
People who don’t think, don’t do any research, are fearful, already have their minds made up, and are highly conditioned to group think and want to please Aunt Minnie are very easily fooled and manipulated. Propagandists can do whatever they want with these people.
Besides checking for sources, consider the reputation of the source. If the source is highly biased, you can bet they have spun on the story to support their bias. It's very, very easy to convince those who wish to believe it that black is white.
What it comes down to is self-honesty. We have to ask ourselves: “Do I want the truth? Do I want the facts? Or will I swallow anything that feeds my cherished opinion?”
I mentioned intuition, too. We are all born with a truth and lie detector; our whole body can sense deception and danger. Unfortunately for most of us, our natural ability to sense BS is subjected to quite a beating as we grow up. We are taught to ignore it and rely only on reason. Information only comes from outside of you. Don't trust yourself! Worse, we are taught to repress what we sense in order to please people. Of course Aunt Minnie knows what she's talking about! How naughty of you to say she's wrong. She's your aunt!
We need our truth detector for quality survival in the world. Even when we have plenty of facts, we still have to interpret them. Facts can be partial, arranged to mislead, or bent out of shape. The truth can be put together in such a way as to mislead. But a finely tuned truth detector can cut through stone and see behind walls. Use your truth sensor!!! Use your crap detector!!!
If you’re not used to using your truth sensor, it can take a while to tune in and learn how to distinguish it from conditioning (belief, fear, anxiety, bias). But it is well work the effort. It engages the whole brain and body, enhancing aliveness and a sense of safety in the world.