In our courts of law, a witness who is about to testify is approached by the baliff and asked the following: “Do you solemnly (swear/affirm) that you will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, (so help you God/under the penalties of perjury)? The answer is considered very important, for one simple reason: Honesty is imperative to ensure that justice is being served. The courtroom proceedings would be pointless without the T R U T H.
However, in what is considered our everyday reality, we’ve been conditioned to believe and accept that whatever is broadcast is truth; without ever questioning the source–or honesty–of the news. In the end, no matter how well-intentioned the news source, we will always–not sometimes–be listening or watching to someone’s opinions about what may or may not have occurred. It’s just a fact of the human condition. The minute we begin to use words (which of course must be filtered through a human perspective), we have moved further from the truth. More often than not, remotely so.
The real issue is much deeper, but few will question what streams forth in dizzying regularity from the black box in their living room. The black box gets to testify without ever taking the oath. Inform us that the sky is falling over Kansas and–“Well, Dorothy, you better put on your hardhat because you’re going to need it.” And you might want to run out to your local hardware store or mall and buy your own hardhat; just don’t be surprised if the merchants are out of stock. The spread of that falling sky might even cross the country and jump clear across the ponds to other nations.
Today, perhaps as always, the bully gets to tell the story of what happened in the school yard, aka “world.” The one with the loudest voice usually does. Only in this case, the bully doesn’t scream at us; the bully uses billions of dollars to snuggle up close and tell us what’s needed for our own good. We should trust it. Those individuals–such as scientists, specialists, and noted authorities–with varying opinions aren’t granted the opportunity to testify…because they don’t own the schoolyard megaphone. Perhaps the only answer is to turn away from the living room court–you know, the one that doesn’t have to swear to: tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth–and think for ourselves.
Dare to dream (and care for one another).
With heartfelt regards,
Copyright © – 2020–R. Arthur Russell