When I am dealing with individual people, one of the most important aspects of the interaction is trust. Do I trust that this person is truly representing themselves and their thoughts? If so, I can believe what is said as true and there is a sound basis for the relationship in that moment.
Integrating one’s thoughts, ideas, beliefs, speech, and actions is integrity. And it is sadly being sacrificed at the altar of popularity and career choices almost everywhere I look.
At this writing, the US is embroiled in what looks like a deep and disturbing situation involving law enforcement using or being used to break laws for political power. In my beautiful Canada, the Prime Minister appears to have broken the law with regard to ethical behaviour.
What is now referred to as mainstream or legacy media is routinely shown to be presenting information that is designed to support their political views while claiming to be objective. I don’t need to cite examples as most readers here already know them.
What happened to integrity?
Where are the honest and trustworthy people in politics in media whose words we can believe are true representations of their thoughts and beliefs? This is a deadly serious question. If I cannot find a way to trust what I see presented, the entire edifice of politics and media becomes irrelevant. In fact, I think we are getting closer to that reality every day. Why bother consuming media that I think is editing stories in order to influence me rather than inform.
As for politicians, do they really think that the promise/break promise cycle does not constantly erode my trust? Do they think trust itself is endless? What about lying, backtracking, withholding information, secret deals etc.? How many times do they think I can stand for deceptions? And what happens when I run out of patience? Ah, now there’s the big question.
Trust is everything to me and its basis is integrity. When I sense it in the person I’m talking with, there is an ease and flow to the exchange that uplifts and informs both of us. We don’t have to agree. Disagreement is inevitable since we each see things our own way. But an honest exchange of information can enlighten and provide clarity to disagreements. But only if there is trust based on integrity. That is what I want to see from media and politicians.
The formula is simple. Say what you mean and mean what you say!