Several students recently explained to me that lying has become a part of the fabric of American culture. They further explained that it is necessary, that there are often only harmless or even benign consequences for lying – and, that there are certainly times when they would prefer to be lied to rather than to hear or know the truth.
So, how then has social media come to be known for its unvarnished truth? Well, thank goodness for mainstream media then, eh?
Now, if I am honest with myself, and I always try to be – I must admit that I am not astonished by people’s need to be lied to. All around us, evidence to the truth of our need for the suit of lies is mounting. Or, perhaps we just can’t handle the truth? More likely – the bliss of ignorance is a preferred comfort.
Yet, it appears that current societal norms include placing high value on having respect. Not necessarily showing respect, as much as having respect. And saying that we have respect. This is important particularly when a suit of lights, or the spotlight of fame, is upon us. However, when it comes to behavior – we are all about the suit of lies. Oi! Among athletes though, who has been fitted for their suit of lies today? Hmmm…
Stay with me…
You may recall that in a recent post to The Sport Digest, I suggested that the hardest job in the world is effortlessness. Our Olympic athletes spark awe with their effortlessness. But, perhaps my earlier suggestion should be amended to further suggest that the two hardest jobs in the world are effortlessness, and teaching your children to tell the truth.
Ryan Lochte’s mother sure might think so.
Ouch! And Yikes! I didn’t mean that to seem so harsh – but talk about a suit of lies in a suit of lights! Rut row!
Hang on now, stay with me still – for a long story – short? No. Too late for that. What we have here is a long story – just a little bit longer…My avid readers may also recall that, in an even earlier post (26 July) I presented an argument for each of us, each day, offering a little more forgiveness to others. So here’s the end game – if not as Brazilian officials (having bruised pride perhaps) at the very least then – out of respect, or something – a growing percentage of the American public is forgiving toward, and in many respects has already forgiven Ryan Lochte. And success makes us forget bad things easily too, yes? Perhaps you would join me in wishing Mr. Lochte only good wishes for a successful run on Dancing with the Stars?
By Dr. Rodney J. Blackman
Dr. Blackman is the Chair of Recreation Management at the United States Sports Academy, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.