by Janet Colliton, Daily Local News, 11/14/16
Truth took a serious hit in this election. It seemed that anything could be said. In fact, truth might have taken enough of a hit to cause us to question the point of taking Ethics courses as professionals or why bother to try. At the risk of sounding like a lecturer I would say that truth matters now more than ever. Here is why.
Trust. Our society is based on the idea that most people tell the truth most of the time, at least as they understand it. Opinions can differ but facts mean something.
If a salesperson tells you a product or a system costs a given amount, we assume this is correct. If the bill comes back in a different amount we can be outraged.
If you are told in the financial services field you have immediate access to your money and discover later this is only after paying a substantial surrender fee or following excessive administrative fees, you can feel cheated.
When a researcher prepares a report and falsifies data so a contract can be awarded, users might be seriously injured by a defective product or a dangerous medication.
In law, my field, perjury is a crime. We ask “what is the evidence?” We probe credibility. This is a polite way of saying we are testing to see whether a witness is lying. Opinions will differ but facts matter.
So why does this matter? One reason is if truth breaks down, trust breaks down too. Trust is the bond that holds a community together….
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