Mic Drop Moment:

We have to be careful in the world today, saying the wrong thing can get you killed:

Here’s a good example. After brilliant poetry and eloquence for a few paragraphs you get this:

“You stubborn Jewish leaders! You refuse to give your hearts to God or even listen to him. You are always against what the Holy Spirit wants you to do. That’s how your ancestors were, and you are just like them! 52 They persecuted every prophet who ever lived. They even killed those who long ago said that the Righteous One would come. And now you have turned against that Righteous One and killed him. 53 You are the people who received God’s law, which he gave you through his angels. But you don’t obey it!” (Book of Acts, 7)

Thus goes Stephen to his death. There comes a point where sugar coating and being polite falls flat and we say what we are genuinely really  thinking.. But are we really “saying what we really feel” or are we saying what we are feeling at the time in a heightened emotional state as a portrait of the specific moment in time that will naturally overlook nuance for the sake of directness and simplicity.

In this example, I think Stephen has given a really comprehensive defense, looked at the stone faces of the men judging him, realized that there’s nothing he can say to walk out of there alive, and figured, “look if I’m going to get killed no matter what I might as well say something that warrant the death penalty”

The opposite of this is 2016 Rio Athlete Lilly King, who pretty clearly taunted her rival who is under some severe doping allegations, and then, upon beating her in the finals, clarified her position and taking it one step further?

King did win, defeating the Russians in a Cold War throwback, but other people make a proleptic victory lap and don’t come up to snuff. I’m pretty sure every political candidate for Executive Office has, whether they win or not, at some point said, “I will be the nominee” however delusional it sounds at the time or in the future looking back which is an unfair criticism as there is evidence that lying to yourself can be good.

This raises the question, whenever you watch and criticize a politician for lying, aren’t you being unfair since in the study I mentioned athletes who are successful lie to themselves all the time? Maybe this self deception is completely required to succeed. Thus so, with any time you see a suspect in court mouthing off to a judge.

Now the questions morphs into, “did the subject actually deceive themselves into thinking this is a good idea?”  It calls to mind Shaft, the 1971 Blaxploitation film clip sampled in White Zombie’s timeless classic “Astro Creep 2000” wherein Richard Roundtree’s character is asked to “Watch your mouth man” and he reminds the Police Chief that he will “”Say any damn thing {the detective] want.”

Now the villain in this situation would be us. If everyone, especially successful people lie to themselves all the tie, then those who claim to be in search of other honest people, such as Diogenes with his lamp in broad daylight Athens, is merely, as the tail of the Emperor’s New Clothes dictates, a lesson in the more unfomfortable notion that maybe, everyone lies to themselves all the time all day every day, and that successful people are just better at it.

And now we end on the last words of Pilate to Jesus, “What is Truth” (John 19:38)

There it is. Standing right in front of you.

 

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