One thing we know about people who are trying to control other people is that the main way they do this is by limiting their access to information (rather limiting access to any ideas that contradict their own).
They also do this by vilifying any of the information that seeps in that contradicts what they say. (creating an us vs. them mentality)
They also do this by feeding the fear of the people they are trying to control. If you can create a narrative that inspires fear, you can control millions of people.
This is a cycle that has happened an unbearable amount of times in our history, with great damage. It can happen at a one-to-one relational level, in a small group, or a group of thousands.
What does it take for us to learn how to discern whether the fear in the stories we are being told about the world are necessary fears (which would be fears that enable our survival)? Or fears that are meant to control us?