As I have been ill with sinusitis and very bad allergies over the past few weeks, I have had lots of down time. One of the things I couldn’t escape, even watching public television, is the election process. The one thing that really struck me with all the ads is the tag line, “I am _________, and I approve this message.” I know this began a few elections back because one of the candidates published an ad of blatant lies. Now campaign candidates have to let the public know that the ads that bare their names are truth.
Perhaps I am naïve, but I find this absolutely appalling. I am not that old, but there was a time when a person’s word meant something. A handshake was as good as a legal contract. What happened to those times? What did I miss? My question is what happened to integrity? What happened to those days when I could look someone in the eye and know that they were honest? Has truth and honesty fallen by the wayside? Is being a person of integrity now something to be ashamed of? Today, in order to play the game of the world, our first assumption must be that the person in front of us is not telling the truth.
Along this same vein, our nation tried to impeach one president because he committed adultery and lied about it. Yet, we refuse to see, let alone condemn, the president who lied about our safety and went to war with another country. I find this appalling. Why doesn’t someone call to task that lie – a lie that has resulted in devastating violence, murder, and destruction? Is it just me? Am I that naïve?
As a small child, when I was caught in a lie, I was whooped like there was no tomorrow. I watched the movie Pinocchio, and it had an impact. I hated my nose anyway, and I didn’t want it any longer. Today, it is socially and politically acceptable to lie. Lying is next to blackberries, text messages, and Facebook. I am not that naïve; I know that there will always be some level of lying in life. Women lie about their age, their true hair color (remember I Love Lucy?), and we lie about “our first time.” I love the language: little white lie (what color are the huge ones?); coloring the truth; fudging the truth; political double speak; just to name a few. Though it is still unacceptable to be called a liar to one’s face. The legal system calls it perjury. Yet, the government can do it with ease and violence. If I did it, I would feel guilty and probably get caught. I don’t have a poker face.
Okay, I hope I get well soon, because I am getting way too serious. Just kidding! But I would be interested in hearing some of your views around this issue. And no lying!
Just venting with integrity, on purpose!