(Illustrated by Pearson Scott Foresman)
A truth that many are reluctant to believe and in itself may be extraordinarily difficult to prove, becomes what some call an inconvenient truth. In many instances (such as the documentary by the same name) it is used to describe a truth(?) that is inconvenient because it suggests a change or realization that would create new challenges for all who “choose” to believe it. This holds true for other concepts, such as the occurrence of something absolutely incredible, one of the many religious stories, paranormal sightings, anything that exceeds the limits of acceptable human experience. In the following mock news reports I’ve attempted to illustrate a scenario where this inconvenient truth concept could be applied on a hypothetically global scale.
“Eyewitnesses in their BILLIONS observed the gathering of millions of UFO’s throughout our worlds skies tonight. Fleets of flying saucers are entering the earth’s atmosphere as we look on in awe and in fear. At long last, the age old question, “are we alone in the universe?” Has been answered, answered with a resounding “no”. We are not alone. On this day that will surely go down in history, our universe just grew a little smaller. For better or for worse, the first of our interstellar neighbors, have arrived.”
“The question on everyone’s lips, is this an invasion? Do they want something? Are these mysterious alien crafts here to take humanity somewhere far from this solar system? Is this the end? We simply don’t know. Joined efforts and singular attempts made by nations and even individuals, have all but failed. The eerie silence is becoming too much for many to bear, with schools and businesses closing throughout nations across the globe. What is going on?”
“We expected bad, we hoped for the best, what we got was confusing. Reporting live from London, England, where the nation has awoken to once familiar empty skies. At approximately 3 AM, our time, the alien fleets began to rapidly ascend from earth’s atmosphere. Like the biblical exodus, the alien crafts have not only left our planet but have left our solar system. Why they came here, what they wanted, where they’ve gone, we have no idea. We’ve brought on Professor Clarkson to discuss possible theories. Good morning Professor.”
90 YEARS LATER
“Up next, the 90 year anniversary of the spectacle that fooled the world, the great “world fleet” phenomenon. The day the earth stood still, amusing for some, shocking for others, it was thought by many to be an invasion of flying saucers. The surviving footage recorded by today’s standards looks incredibly dubious, but 90 years ago people were convinced they were being visited by an alien race. Coming up, we have physicist Christopher Rorke discuss possibilities for what might have actually caused the alleged sightings.”
To a third party, a truth that leaves no tangible form of a metaphorical footprint of any indisputable kind, is by all intents and purposes, identical to a lie of the same elusive nature. In this sense, “belief” in regards to acceptable truth (like most things) is relative, not absolute. If it’s perceivable and a consistent part of many individuals “worldview” then it must be real/true. If however, it is not perceivable, in no way tangible, and above all else unpopular (humans have a tendency to believe what they believe is held true by the majority) then it is likely to be false. This is then amplified exponentially, with the passing of time. An alleged phenomenon that occurred one month ago is one thing, but give it 100 years, 1000 years and “truth” becomes something else entirely. We call myths “myths” with the understanding that they are all strange fictitious stories from the ancient world. But there was a time when these stories were regarded as truths to many. So the next time you find yourself wondering if something is true or false, consider whether or not you’re choosing or not choosing to believe it because it is simply convenient for you to do so.
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