Student shares selected text from original oratory “CAUTION: THIS IS A LIE”
In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue…and proceeded to enslave some 250,000 men and women and make them work in his gold mines.
But, some two years into this process, he worked nearly half of them to death. Oh, and he also sold the native girls into prostitution… but he is our hero. After all, he was the first to discover America.
Actually, no he did not. The Viking Leif Ericson and his crew were first. But, you know what they say: first is worst, second is best, right? Well, about some 14,000 years before Columbus was even conceived, the Native Americans found it. So he is sitting at around.. hmmm, carry the one, about 1 millionth.
We know Abraham Lincoln for his amazing leadership; his famous words, “All men are created equal” and he even passed the Emancipation Proclamation, to show even African Americans are equal as well.
But, in 1858, during a series of debates in Illinois for the U.S. Senate, Stephen Douglas accused Lincoln of supporting, “Negro equality.” Lincoln made his position very clear in saying, I quote, “I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races.”
It is funny how hearing the actual words, instead of a rough interpretation of the real quote, can change your view, but that is the problem.
We have become so fine with what is printed that we do not look into the fine print to find the whole truth.
We have become so accustomed to interpreting general knowledge as fact that we tend to lose the real side of things.
My sister would always tell me that there were three sides to every story: your side, my side and the truth. In order to really understand why finding the truth is so complex, we must realize what makes people accept anything as fact.
As Stephen Dunbar and Steven Levitt, authors of the award-winning novel Freakonomics, explain in the first chapter of their book, the spike in murders by teens in 1995 and then sudden drop in the years to follow, leading to the lowest crime rate in 35 years was not because of the roaring ‘90s economy, gun control, or New York City’s crime strategies.
While these explanations may seem plausible, in actuality, they fall short. Simply put, these ideas confuse and confound the landscape of reality replacing the truth with misguided assumption.
So, why did the crime rate drop? The truth is much more obscure and harder to understand.
Turns out, abortion laws led to the drop in homicides. Mothers in environments or situations which may lead their “at risk” child into criminal behavior, chose to terminate their pregnancies, thus avoiding a potential risk of crime by their unborn children. While we can understand this now, this situation clearly shows the trend: components that seem factual automatically are recognized as such, because we do not fully understand them.
CBS news finds on average, “Americans ages 15 to 24 spend almost two hour a day watching television, and only seven minutes of their daily leisure time on reading.” I know, we are too busy to read! We have important assignments to procrastinate on!
This is why Kenny Thompson, author of the newspaper Cracked, wrote an article titled, “6 Terrifying User Agreements You’ve Probably Accepted.” Among these agreements, you can see that if a user posts selfies to most social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, they own them, and have the right to do whatever they please with the photos.
Because in those guidelines that we happily accepted, it blatantly states these companies have license to reproduce or distribute your product as they would like. So, you do not remember agreeing to a YOLO tattoo across your chest? Not according to the last selfie you posted. The Guardian finds that only 7 percent of people actually read the guidelines to which they agree.
So let us enlarge the font on life, and realize that if Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, we should know what benefits came our way. And, if in 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue, what did he do there?
The only way to find the truth is to seek answers. If the truth is inaudible, crank up the volume. Because it is up to us.