Truth Is the Anvil That Wears Out All the Hammers

I live in a small town. Very few members of my faith live nearby. I’m pretty much alone here. Some might worry that I am discriminated against. No, it’s not that my stuff has gone missing or that folks refuse to do business with me because my beliefs are different than theirs. It’s the doubt in their eyes. “Are the stories true?” they seem to ask.

“What did you hear?” I ask, and they, embarrassed, mutter some off-the-wall, completely left-field claim they saw on TV or read in the tabloids.

What this demonstrates is that distrust, enmity, fear can be engendered between people—even neighbors in small towns—when ludicrous lies are fed through media in an endless stream. No telling what my neighbors and I might think of each other if we didn’t talk it out.

“No,” I answer, “we do not ___________.” [fill in the blank with whatever the absurd falsehood was.]

“But you know,” I add, “you [Jews, Catholics, fill in the blank] have been accused of that. Is it true?

They immediately see the point, because they know it’s not true of their religion either.

What this demonstrates is that distrust, enmity, fear can be engendered between people—even neighbors in small towns—when ludicrous lies are fed through media in an endless stream. No telling what my neighbors and I might think of each other if we didn’t talk it out.

The answer is to lock arms against the common enemy—the factory of lies—and stand together against the stupidity and very real threat of violence that can come from unrestrained, unchallenged anti-religious invective pouring out of TV sets and computer monitors. We must all stand together—any religion or belief, any anything—and say enough is enough. We refuse to be pitted against one another and we are not going to take the bait. We are only interested in truth, nothing else.

To paraphrase the Calvinist theologian Theodore Beza to the King of Navarre in the 16th century*: “Truth is the anvil that wears out all the hammers.”


*The saying originated in the reply of the Calvinist theologian Theodore Beza (1519–1605) to the King of Navarre.

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