By Lee Parker
Once upon a time lying was unacceptable; it was simply not allowed. Those who lied were branded as untrustworthy. They were shunned in business and social circles. Lying was neither condoned nor ignored.
However, the voice of truth seems to have been silenced among the people. How else can you explain modern society’s acceptance of lies as a natural part of life? Lies are accepted as truth in every aspect of our culture. Lies are told between family members, government and citizen, clergy and parishioner, and no one seems to care.
As a child, I remember having my mouth washed out with soap for telling a lie. My mother insisted that something in my mouth must have made me lie because she knew that I knew that lying was wrong! After I cried long enough, she sent me to my room to think about what could have made me lie.
My mother’s discipline affected me in such a profound way that today I cannot stand liars. I’m one of the few people I know who values truth and despises lies. Amazing. It is as if the truth doesn’t matter to most people, if only there’s a reasonable lie in its place.
I hate to see what the acceptance of lies has done to the American people. On February 13, 2004, a small article was published in "Democracy Now", in which the White House admitted that President Bush lied in his 2002 State of the Union address, saying that Al Qaeda had obtained plans to U.S. nuclear plants. Bush lied about possible terrorist threats to our nuclear plants!
It galls me that George W. Bush lied to the American people in order to emotionalize the country into backing his invasion of a sovereign nation and no one seems to care. We were manipulated into sending our young men and women to die or get wounded in Iraq. Doesn’t that upset you?
Or look at the evil lies perpetuated by the clergy for years. According to news stories like the March 4, 2004 AP release about Reverend Barry Ryan of Florida sodomizing a young boy, and convictions for pedophilia like that of Reverend John Geogam, who was sentenced to 10 years in jail, the Catholic Church knew of acts of pedophilia perpetrated by their priests. They knew yet they tried to cover them up. They lied to those who trusted them. Doesn’t that upset you?
Lies have a way of destroying the lives of their victims.
- Many people lost their life’s savings and retirement funds based on the lies of Enron executives;
- Because of Halliburton Corporation’s misrepresentations, taxpayer dollars went to pay inflated charges for services provided to Iraq.
- The U.S. educational system is socially engineering your children through programs like Goals 2000, while lying to parents about what they are actually teaching.
Does any of this upset you?
Lies, lies, everywhere you look… everyone lies. People tell big lies and little lies. They lie to each other and to themselves. Lies cover lies and pretty soon, the truth is irreparably obscured.
The acceptance of lies as a social norm is fundamentally immoral. Morality and lying are mutually exclusive. When a lie is uncovered and the Truth is revealed and few, if any, demand accountability from the liars, then society ends up supporting the lie. By not exposing a lie - any lie - you become the lie, at which point your actions are based on a lie.
For example, by accepting George W. Bush’s lies you condone them. By accepting any lie you condone it. The only alternative is to object, to make a big stink. Whenever you encounter lies and misrepresentation, identify the liars. Get your friends and colleagues together and expose the lies. Write articles, make a nuisance of yourself with your congressman’s office, don’t stop until all lies are exposed!
Either you side with the liar or you side with the Truth. There is no middle ground. There is no such thing as a "little white lie" or half-truth. It is one or the other. Either you support the lie or you expose it.
I’ve already made my choice. I will not live my life as a lie. Now you choose.