Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Aug. 13: How About Some Truth-Telling?

By Sylvia Gurinsky

I'd like to see a new family value promoted and practiced, not just by politicians, but also by Madison Avenue: Truth telling.

Lying has been much in the news the last few days - the lies of former Sen. John Edwards; the revelation that the girl who was at the opening ceremonies of the Olympics in Beijing wasn't the one doing the singing; the revelation that some of the fireworks were fake.

And, there's that commercial that Visa has aired with the inspiring story of British runner Derek Redmond, who was injured during the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona in a 400-meter semifinal; Redmond made it around the track with the help of his father. The story was inspiring, and the ad would be, too, if not for the knowledge that Visa whited out the writing on Redmond's father's T-shirt. The T-shirt, of course, was a Nike shirt with the inscription "Have You Hugged Your Foot Today," along with the company's famous slash.

Benjamin Franklin was quoted as saying that honesty is the best policy. Mark Twain put a twist on it: "Honesty is the best policy - when there is money in it."

But George Bernard Shaw's quote perfectly describes the last few days: "I am afraid we must make the world honest before we can honestly say to our children that honesty is the best policy."

Sadly, we're a long way from it, Mr. Shaw.

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