“Truth isn’t truth.” Who hasn’t read or heard that remark from Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s wacky lawyer speaking on Sunday’s Meet the Press? You can read all about that online. So there’s no sense in repeating the numerous stories. Besides, “What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening,” Trump told us on one occasion. In other words, Trump is telling us not to believe what we actually observe.
Many of us wonder if we will EVER get the truth from Trump. His sycophants mouth his words, spitting them out like watermelon seeds that they hope will sprout across the nation. One sprout that has come to life and multiplies is Trump’s phrase about the media being the “enemy of the American people.”
That condemnation dates back to Roman times, but in more recent history, Adolf Hitler’s administration used that rhetoric to describe Jews. “Each Jew is a sworn enemy of the German people,” they said, which led to Nazis murdering thousands of Jews in the Holocaust. The leaders of the Soviet Union also called those who opposed their regime “enemies of the people,” effectively silencing anyone attempting to convey truthful messages about the Soviet’s brutal oppression.
From the start of Trump’s election campaign in 2016, his “whole enterprise has been a lie, a fraud… a cruel deception — a sustained and increasingly frantic attempt to obscure inconvenient truth,” wrote Eugene Robinson in the Washington Post on August 21. To date, Trump’s lies and misleading statements total more than 4,229 since he took office; undoubtedly that number will increase throughout this month and the next and the next through the November elections.
Psychologists tell us that when we are told a lie, our brain’s natural process is to automatically accept that it is true. But then we may begin to think about the possibility that what we heard was a falsehood. It takes a bit of time to analyze whether we have heard a fraudulent statement or a truthful one. If we don’t take the time and make the effort to verify with evidence what is or is not true, we just accept our first impression that the lie is true.
In my opinion, Trump’s followers just don’t bother to search for truth. Nor do they care. It’s easier to agree with their “emperor,” slap a Trump bumper sticker on their vehicles, and attend rallies to praise their “dear leader.”
Nevertheless, as Robinson noted in his opinion piece today: “Truth is truth — and worth fighting for.”