Telling the truth - whether about cookies or major doping scandals - can be revolutionary. (photo by Lindesy BW/flickr)
By Nancy Cruse
“Tell me the truth!”
Hasn’t every child heard that from their parent as they stand next to the cookie jar that holds nothing but a black hole, chocolate chips stuck to the front of their shirt, and one half eaten cookie still in their hand? “Who,” you ask, “ate all the cookies?”
In the overall scheme of life, eating the entire cookie jar full of cookies, is not a life changing event. Sure, your child is going to be on a sugar buzz that will give them enough energy to vacuum the entire house. We call that a consequence. Eventually, that child is going to have a stomach ache that hopefully they will connect to the quantity of cookies consumed. We call that learning moderation. Maybe, said child, having been down this road before, will look you in the eyes and say, “I’m the one who ate all the cookies.” At my house, that response would be met with a huge hug, followed by “I am so proud of you for telling the truth! I hope you feel good inside because you chose honesty which was the right choice. Now, here’s the vacuum. You know what to do.” That’s called you get to feel good inside because you chose to tell the truth, but you also get to vacuum the entire house because that’s the consequence for eating an entire jar of cookies. Especially when Mom had a hard day at work and really needed some chocolate!
Our society seems to believe that you can do whatever you want as long as when you get caught you tell the truth and then all will be forgiven. I have to wonder if Lance Armstrong thought that he would still hold a place of honor in sports after coming clean. Robert Brault, an internet blogger, says, “Every lie is two lies – the lie we tell others and the lie we tell ourselves to justify it.” I’m guessing Lance thought things like, “I have to use performance enhancing drugs in order to be competitive because everyone else is using them.”Whatever the reason, because we have free will, Lance gets to choose to do whatever he wants. He also gets to have the consequence that goes with the behavior. “Lance, here’s the vacuum. You know what to do.”
As George Orwell, author of Animal Farm said, “In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” Let the revolution begin!
Nancy Cruse has been part of the Bloomington/Normal community for the past almost 30 years. A widow, with five children, along with her late husband was a small business owner in downtown Bloomington. Now employed by State Farm, Nancy is active in the community, writing the Clare House newsletter and maintaining their Facebook page, hosting an annual Fourth of July Food Drive, a team leader and fundraiser for the Pat Nohl Lupus Walk, and a member of Toastmasters International, as well as volunteering in various capacities at Holy Trinity Church and schools. In her spare time, Nancy likes to run, bike, hike, read, sew, and be a vegetarian who occasionally indulges in a Schooners Tenderloin.
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