Our very own Bagwan has seen fit to trouble himself regarding deceit. A bit of irony he’d pick this forum as his platform, but who am I to question the Bagwan? Speaking for we the unwashed, I’d like to offer this poignant lesson as proof positive of the veracity of Mark Twain’s famous quote, “There are lies, damned lies and statistics.” Take a few minutes and inhale the truth:
The first time I ever heard the word “mendacity was in the movie “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.” In this quote from Big Daddy (played by Burl Ives) he not only defines the word but explains its role in our everyday lives:
Mendacity. What do you know about mendacity? I could write a book on it…Mendacity. Look at all the lies that I got to put up with. Pretenses. Hypocrisy. Pretendin’ like I care for Big Mama, I haven’t been able to stand that woman in forty years. Church! It bores me. But I go. And all those swindlin’ lodges and social clubs and money-grabbin’ auxiliaries. It’s-it’s got me on the number one sucker list. Boy, I’ve lived with mendacity. Now why can’t you live with it? You’ve got to live with it. There’s nothin’ to live with but mendacity. Is there?
There is always mendacity around Curmudgeon Corner but it really doesn’t matter. Around the Corner it is just like the proverbial tree falling in the forest – no one hears it, or if they do, they will forget it by tomorrow. The form of mendacity that bogles my mind is the kind that takes place out in public eye, which in this information age is bound to be discovered.
I am particularly confused by the lies which are completely unnecessary, for example the Brian Williams’ lies. Now here is a guy who has reached the pinnacle of his profession. In his chosen field you can’t get any higher than being the anchor for the primetime news on a major network. So after he already has the job, he then after the fact tries to burnish his resume with lies. Big Daddy and I could both understand lying to get the job, but this ex post facto mendacity serves no purpose. For this, Brian has been banished to MSNBC where he will report on what is described as “breaking news.” I picture this as being similar to the guy the local affiliate sends to stand on the bridge over I-25 at 6:00 AM in a blizzard, telling you that your morning commute might take a little longer than usual.
The other public display of mendacity this week came from a lady in Spokane, Washington. Her attempt at a new identity reminded me of a high school coach of mine who told me that with hard work I could be whatever I wanted to be. Those were much simpler times; I really doubt that Coach Gibbs was suggesting that with proper effort I could become a black woman.
I always thought the term “passing” referred to fair skinned blacks who tried to pass as white. This white woman made a completely unnecessary attempt to reverse that process and “pass” as black. Yes she wanted to be in the NAACP but the NAACP accepts white members. She rose to be the President of the Spokane chapter but that also is possible for whites especially in a city like Spokane which really doesn’t have very many CP’s. She has been ousted from the NAACP and lost her job as Professor of African studies at a local university all because of an unnecessary lie. Her only defense is that she “identifies” as black. To the rest of us her identity is white with a splash of bat-shit crazy.
A lot of lies are acceptable, understandable and in some cases better than the truth. Cush’s parents lied to him about being adopted. For years they told him he was adopted, but it turns out he really wasn’t – what parent out there wouldn’t do the same? Or how about when President Clinton lied about Monica? He was following the book to the letter on that type of situation. And it would have worked too if the little bitch had sent the dress to the dry cleaners the way the rest of us do when we get cum spots on our clothes.
It is hard to say that the truth is always the best. I would say that not hurting folks would be the best and if you can weave the truth in there too, than all the better.