Tuesday, September 23, 2008

testimony: the truth about truth

Ignorance really is bliss. For years I knew my grandparents truly HATED white people but, I would never have used the word prejudice & certainly not racist to describe either one of them. I mean, they just didn’t like white people (LOL). That was an example of my own ignorance. In my immature mind, minorities could never discriminate (but you'll read about that realization on a later date) & a black person could hardly ever be racist.

Around the age of 13 I began to keep a diary, my “journal” I called it. I filled it with all of my inner-most thoughts, desires, & my deepest darkest secrets. I kept it for years, until momma & gran(ma) got a hold of it one evening. I found them in a room filled with tears, just a shoutin' & a carryin on:

“WHAT YOU MEAN YOU GAY?” “YOU NOT GAY! ...we just need to pray about it, dat's all...”

To this day, that’s been one of the most memorable moments of my life. That night I was faced with the truth about my family's beliefs. The way they believed as far as certain people & certain things.

Now at the age of 24, my mother still sees me as damned because I love men, her reason being the old testament of King James I (of England) and his Holy Bible. Now maybe I could actually respect (not necessarily agree with) her point of view if she wasn't guilty of her own "abominations" (but this isn't her blog, so we're gonna leave that alone). I’ve often wondered if "Christians" ever take the time to actually read that magical manual they claim to live by? Or if they just pay attention to what Pastor Jenkins puts the most emphasis on every Sunday in his sermon while he's behind that podium, just a spittin’ & a shoutin & a carryin on…Pastor Jenkins who just so happened to be tryin to holler at one of my “girlz” (silly) the night before at the Metro…with his shirt off. The fact is, that based on James Charles Stuart & his old testament, I was damned from the time my mother conceived me.

All of this brings me to knowledge, which is even more satisfying than ignorance: knowing and not knowing; the real and the fake; but more specifically, truth and lies (girl LIES!).

“...truth...is in the eye of the beholder[1]." – Laurence J. Peter (1919 - 1990)

There was a time when a quote like this would have prompted me to immediately break out my dictionary to dispute that truth (like lies) is clearly defined. I would have declared that “truth is absolute,” or that “perception is in the eye…” I mean, how can there be room for interpretation between what is & what isn't? This of course was before I grasped the concept of what lawyers actually get paid HUNDREDS of thousands of dollars to do.

Orenthal James Simpson & Robert Kelly were both found not guilty by a group of their peers in a court of law. Despite the OVERWHELMING evidence + eyewitness testimonies, both these men were free to go & to return to their innocent lives. To this day neither has "confessed" to any crime. To this day both men are still celebrated by many as heroes; still worshipped & honored in their respective fields.

Truth is not necessarily defined by a holy book; nor can it always be justified in a court of law. The truth is, truth does not without a doubt equal fact. & fiction is not all false. Truth is whatever you believe; & it can most certainly differ from person to person. My truth is just that, my own. But whatever you decide your truth is, stand by it...you never know when you might have to testify.

1. Laurence J. Peter - The Peter Principle (1969)

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