Is Truth Dead?

Time magazine new cover “Is Truth Dead?” is a message and a warning to us as a society. While the United States administration disregards the value of truth in order to defend its position and maintain power, what is our role to defend it?

The cover might seem familiar to some since it copies the iconic 1966 cover “Is God Dead?”. Time magazine questioned the own existence of God in a world full of inhumanities (civil rights in the US) and a rising “godless” communist movement in SouthEast Asia. Of course back then, and even now, a majority still believe in God or in a superior power. But sometimes, they believe only when they want to…

It’s the same today with the truth. It seems that our politicians and part of our society only want to believe in the truth went it benefits them. This is a dangerous course, according to sociologist: a repetition of a false statement, even in the course of disputing it, often increases the number of people who believe it (Time. March 23, 2017).

It is illogical for a human being to think of the truth as non-truth…Thanks to our 5 senses and our scientific way of thinking (philosophy 101) we have the ability to recognize concrete objects, to reason, and therefore acknowledge facts.

But now we confronted with powers that wish to undermine the truth and build their own reality that benefits them. When Trump, campaign manager Kellyanne Conway evoked the term “alternative facts” to justify her boss actions or statements, it was clear that the new administration would be intolerant to the truth.

Now that we know how the White House and other populist movements in Western Europe does with the truth and facts, how do we counter back?

First: promote and defend an active, transparent, and investigative media. A free media is what defines a real democracy, the US has been blessed for having a diversified media, and Donald Trump knows it, thus he declared the media as “the enemy of the people”.

Second: participate! We need a population more politically active. Unfortunately, generations feel less compelled to participate in political advocacy or even vote. The legislative branch has tremendous power.

Third: be informed. Similar to advertising campaigns, anyone can be duped with a lack of information. Companies plague us with tons of ads to create a reality that probably doesn’t represent us, such as the fashion and beauty industry. However, we are seeing a change in the industry, because customers got informed, got active, and reflected their opinion on social platforms and the media (exactly the three points I mentioned). Now, some of these firms have changed their philosophy and adopted a more realistic view of society, closer to the TRUTH. One great example is the true beauty campaign by Dove.

 

 

 

We need to remember people that truth is what makes great nations, and without it, our freedoms will be lost. “Trust is a transaction between leaders and those they lead.” (Nancy Gibbs. March 23rd, 2017).

Sources:

“Donald Trump Truth: Behind ‘Is Truth Dead?’ Time Cover.” Time. Time, n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

“Is God Dead?: TIME’s Iconic Cover at 50.” Time. Time, n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

“When a President Can’t Be Taken at His Word.” Time. Time, n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

 

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3 Responses to Is Truth Dead?

  1. labbasi says:

    Time was smart to reuse their cover but for truth. Media truth has never been 100% real and biased in some sort of degree. As a society, we know to be cautious on what to believe yet do not act upon looking for the truth. I agree with your 3 steps; promote, participate, and be informed. It has always been upon the people to search more than just believing one statement. We must push the limit to gain the full story. I think people will do this only to the stories that mean something to them and not everything. It can’t be a pick and choose what stories you will investigate the truth and some you believe whatever is said.

  2. pfistere says:

    Honestly, truth in the media has always been skewed, ever since the days of yellow journalism. It’s human nature to bend things in a way that is most individually advantageous. However, that doesn’t make it right. I think now, more than ever, it’s critical that us as consumers question, and as you said, participate! Every choice that we make should demonstrate what we believe in. We need to “walk the walk.” Ultimately, I see it as a good thing because discussion and transparency encourage change. The more that we can question what is produced and facilitate honest discussions, the better. I think Time’s strategy of reinventing the cover was extremely smart as it resonates with consumers as well as effectively demonstrates how our society has changed, but also hasn’t.

  3. jieqionh says:

    I totally agree with you that Time’s strategy of reinventing the cover is certainly a smart way of sending a warning message to society. Comparing truth to god resonates easily with readers and to question the existence of those notions. The blogger points out that ‘we confronted with powers that wish to undermine the truth and build their own reality that benefits them’, or in other words, ‘they believe only when they want to’. At this point, I favor pfistere’s comment that ‘it’s human nature to bend things in a way that is most individually advantageous’.
    Nowadays, especially in the US, people tend to use the terms of ‘fake news’, ‘alternative facts’ and ‘free media’ to make excuses and cause confusions. In addition, ‘promoting investigative media; participation; be informed’, all those suggestions sound so familiar to me as they used to be weapons hold by westerners to criticize Chinese media. However, I do believe it is a dilemma in the nature of journalism or society, not necessarily bound to a certain nation. This is a universal puzzle that to be solved by unified efforts, not only a human right issue to China.