A friend of mine sent me an email with this slogan at the bottom. “There’s nothing FAIR nor BALANCED about the truth ‐‐ its just truth”
So I thought about it and came up with the following. Of course your mileage may vary but what is your take on this question?
To consider this matter from my perspective, it occurred to me that at a given point in time, each of us only has a version of what we currently think is the truth. Therefore each person’s view of the truth, at a given instant, may, and is most likely different. If this is so, then who’s version of the truth is considered most accurate and therefore the real truth?
It might be safe to assume that the fallacy of this argument brings us to face the fact that there is no one real truth; only our individual perception of what we believe to be the truth; only our personal version. Comforting isn’t it?
Now the real disturbing concern here is that many of us go about our daily lives making life and death decisions for ourselves and our loved ones based on what we believe is the truth. But as we already pointed out many of us are not aware that we really don’t know the truth; out of ignorance, we just act as though we do.
For each of us the next part of this discussion is fairly unique. It is my assertion that most of what we believe to be our current version of the truth is probably based on information provided by what we considered as trusted sources; parents, family members, clergy, politicians, peers, marketing executives, entertainment sources like TV and movies that are produced by movie directors, newspapers, newscasters, almost any written document (oh? Did I say trusted? <g>).
Rather than to assume the next part we should visit the fact that each of the groups mentioned above are all governed by various degrees of personal values and character traits. Among these traits we need to consider the existence of varying degrees of honesty, ethics, fairness, reliability, responsibility and accountability for one’s own conduct.
Before you get too comfortable in reveling in the safe and secure feeling that your sense of the truth is based on the integrity of your life to‐date sources being trusted, consider the following:
- Parents (heard of the tooth fairy, Santa, Easter bunny?).
- Clergy (can be trusted ‐ well maybe; how do you know?)
- Politician’s (are you kidding me?)
- Peers (well they are your friends)
- Marketing Executives (Sure! Right! Definitely!)
- Movie directors (especially those that claim to make documentaries and then present political statements based on their personal bias)
- Newspaper Editors (come on! They don’t even have the ethics to properly label an editorial, surreptitiously embedded in the news on the front page, as an editorial)
- Newscasters (you tell me who you trust!)
- Written documents (unfortunately, it appears to me that many of us accept almost anything in writing as fact. (history is generally believed to have been written by the winners)
- PR experts (like the ones that are employed by various presidential and political candidates to maintain damage control, initiate character assassination of opponents and/or create and manage whole party agendas)
- Books (need to remind you that they are written by people – carefully determine the orientation and motivation of the author before drawing any conclusions about the validity of the content)
Yes the trend here is that most of us base our personal version of the truth on input from other people. Now we already know (a personal truth) that people, as individuals, all have a personal bias. In most cases the individual may not even be aware of their slanted point of view. However this personal position varies by subject and in many cases may also be derived most likely from the same sources that has influenced your current version of the truth.
So to review just what is the truth? What do you really know for sure?