Honesty In School
Being truthful in what I say and do
‘Story or Truth?’
– Bill Croskey
OK, Time for a True/False quiz to recognize Honesty.
True/False: If you are swimming, you have to wait an hour after eating or you’ll get cramps and drown.
True/False: Keep unused batteries in the refrigerator to prolong their lives.
True/False: Sugar causes hyperactivity in children.
The answers are all “False” or at least highly debated. These beliefs are old “wives” tales, or what would now be called Urban Legends. For further information on these, check out https://www.snopes.com/
You may or may not agree with the above statements. (If you want to get teachers – or parents- riled up, ask them on the day after Halloween or Easter whether candy causes increased hyperactivity!) Not unlike UFO sightings or miracle cures, legends entice us to be believers, and to pass them on as true. Also, legends may be attractive because they are really just well-constructed stories. I’ll bet you know a storyteller; a charismatic person who enjoys the conversation spotlight. A storyteller hooks the listeners, leads them along, and delights or surprises them with the ending. The joy of a story well-told comes from the pictures created, the pretending they afford, and the possibilities which are conjured by the telling. With storytelling, taking the trip is often as much fun as reaching the destination.
When I was a kid, one expression that our parents used to describe us NOT telling the truth was to say we were “telling stories.” The message from this turn of a phrase was that a “story” was an untruth. OK, I admit a story may be true, or false, or a mixture. But you might readily agree that one can convince a lot more listeners with a story than one can by showering an audience with facts. Stories may be more powerful than data, yet those stories that are false can lead others to act based on lies. That brings us to the Character Quality of Honesty, and its opposite, Deception.