We need small truths in this big pantomime
In a sea of mediocrity sustained by constant lies, there is a world worth fighting for.
What Is Family?
I’ve always questioned the authenticity of family relations. We get bombarded about the importance of family since the day we are born. It’s highly unpopular to speak ill of family. I find this makes sense as long as we get the definition of family right.
If family is just sharing the same flesh and blood, I’m out. I feel lucky enough to have always been looked after and cared for by my family, and my genes are the last thing I’m grateful for. The choice to bring me up with love and kindness, the decision to give me the attention and the means to become who I am today, the hard work of providing for me until I could provide for myself — all of that is what I am grateful for. That is what makes my parents who they are. What if someone had made a mistake at the hospital and given me to the wrong couple? Well, I couldn’t care less. It wouldn’t change anything.
What About Tradition?
Similarly, all too often culture and tradition are supported on dubious pillars. Certain attitudes are favoured and they must be upheld for everyone to see. Certain values define certain communities, and their members will go to great lengths to show everybody that they adhere to the common principles. In my experience, not many people are as strict with their principles in private as their public displays of fervour would make one think.
In some countries, it would be impossible to imagine a leader who isn’t married, or religious, or male. In others, families prefer to put up with each other’s unwelcome presence before having to explain why they decided to spend Christmas separately. The vast majority will deplore the act of cheating on one’s significant other, and yet the vast majority will have cheated at some point.
The Big Pantomime
Society is one big pantomime in which the truth matters much less than appearance. Most of us will have to partake to a certain extent. Those of us who dare to defy the farce will pay the consequences: a bunch of clowns will point their fingers at us and laugh from a…