The Lying Society

A society built on lies will collapse. Truth promotes trust. Lies undermine the social ties necessary to a healthy society. Donald Trump, even before inauguration, is destroying American society.

In 1986 I had the privilege of visiting Refuseniks in the Soviet Union. I was heavily involved in the Soviet Jewry movement, sending both products for sale and information to the Soviet Union. Both on my trip and in my work I saw how Soviet society was hampered by secrecy. They had no copy machines and fax machines in offices because they could be used to disseminate the truth, and truth was the enemy. The Soviet newspaper was called, perhaps still is, Pravda, meaning truth. The government insisted on controlling information, meaning insisted on lies. And it collapsed under its own weight. Governments limiting information and insisting on lies will collapse.

The Trump administration denies global warming, apparently will promote the fictitious idea that vaccines cause autism, appoints an opponent of the environment to head the EPA, and the list goes on and on. The prophet Isaiah over 2500 years ago forewarned:

Ah those who call evil good and good evil; Who present darkness as light and light as darkness; Who present bitter as sweet and sweet as bitter! Ah, those who are so wise in their own opinion, So clever in their own judgment... Who vindicate him who is in the wrong in return for a bribe, And withhold vindication from him who is in the right. Assuredly as straw is consumed by a tongue of fire and hay shrivels as it burns, Their stock shall become like rot, And their buds shall blow away like dust... (Isaiah 5)

We are watching the destruction of democracy. But it cannot be destroyed if we persist. We must confront every outrage with the truth. Organize experts to speak the truth. Share the truth on and through the media. The people will prevail, and democracy will be restored, but not without a fight that will require every voice to Lift Every Voice and Sing.

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© 2016 by Rabbi Mark H. Levin.