2018-10-01 – Five and a half years ago, I came up with the idea of having a holiday to celebrate truth telling. I called it Diogenes Day. It was supposed to be the opposite of April Fools’ Day and, I picked October 1 as the day because it is as opposite as you can get in the calendar from April 1.
I never got much interest in the idea. You can read my previous posts about Diogenes Day here.
When I first thought of the idea, lying was still thought of as a sin. Now it is public policy. We saw it last week with the hearing on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, where rage was offered as a substitute for truth. The folks in charge opposed any fact-finding on the issue and were outraged that anyone would suggest it.
They said, “wouldn’t you be outraged if you were falsely accused?” Well sure. But I might be outraged if I was correctly accused, as well. It’s not fun to get caught. Outrage is not much of an indicator of truth. But that’s where we are.
In the world we now live in, is Diogenes Day still a relevant idea?
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Maybe we need to go back to a simpler time without so much fussin’ and fightin’ as the Beatles said. A song that can take you there is Wonderful World. The original was sung by Sam Cooke, who was raised in Chicago. Herman’s Hermits did a faster, more pop sounding cover of the song that nevertheless works quite well. Years later Art Garfunkel recorded a slow version of Wonderful World with help from Paul Simon and James Taylor.
Don’t know much about geography,
Don’t know much trigonometry
Don’t know much about algebra,
Don’t know what a slide rule is for
But I do know that one and one is two,
And if this one could be with you,
What a wonderful world this would be
–Herb Alpert / Lou Adler / Sam Cooke