Lying, adjective. 2. telling or containing lies; deliberately untruthful; deceitful; false: a lying report. Synonyms: deceptive, misleading, mendacious, fallacious; sham, counterfeit. www.dictionary.com
When did lying become so acceptable? I know it’s always been around in different shades — especially with politicians — but, in the end, I always had the confidence that the greater Truth would win out over any lie. The truth is the truth, so help me god, we swear on whatever book we choose to use. But my faith in the good has been thoroughly shaken. Of course, now lying is being done in technicolour in Washington. The White House has lies about their lying claiming that they have alternate truths. They truly get the “prize” for being the most egregious liars in my lifetime.
But it’s not just them. Lying seems to permeate every aspect of our lives now. Its presence has shaken my trust of what anyone has to say about anything — except good friends and family. I am at a point where I don’t believe the claims on products to be organic or hormone free or free of additives are true unless I know personally the farmer or the butcher or the chef who is telling me. And, we are now plagued with those hideous phone calls claiming anything from our grandchildren being arrested and needing money to offering free, free, free vacations. I sometimes say to them that they are lying, that what they are claiming is just not true. But then I feel bad for them and apologize and tell them I’m sorry they have to do that dishonest job. It always makes me sad for them and me. In the locker room today, one woman was lamenting that she could no longer be a neighbourhood activist because when she went to City Hall meetings and told the truth, they chose to believe the lies.
Am I just out-of-step with the times? Am I doomed to live in whatever alternate reality whoever’s in power decides suits their purposes? My ex used to say, “Honesty is a very over-rated virtue.” I thought those words did not bode well for the happiness or healthiness of our marriage. How can you trust a person who has that as one of his operating tenets? It’s not like I never told or tell a lie but I always feel bad about it and, more importantly, know in my heart of hearts, that that lie will come back to haunt me. When I was little, standing in the line for confession, I would feel the guilt of those little lies hanging on my head until I went behind the curtain and confessed it all. I don’t think there’s enough Our Fathers and Hail Marys in the universe to cover all the lies coming out of Washington.
I think the prevalence of lying is a bad sign of a very selfish and self serving world. It’s made me very unhappy since that election in November. I don’t know what I can do to mitigate the harm that all these lies are causing except continue to support and believe the truth and trust that, as Anne Shirley says in Anne of Green Gables, “The Truth Will Set You Free.”