‘What do you know about this business?’ the King said to Alice.Alice in Wonderland, Chapter XII
‘Nothing,’ said Alice.
‘Nothing whatever?’ persisted the King.
‘Nothing whatever,’ said Alice.
When Alice is called as a witness to a situation she has no information about, she simply admits it. However, Alice is not afraid to speak up when she knows false, incomplete or biased information is being presented as truth at the expense of someone else.
‘That proves his guilt,’ said the Queen.
‘It proves nothing of the sort!’ said Alice.
Do you know when to speak up and when to remain silent? It seems too often we speak up when it would be better to listen and we remain silent when our support is needed. Like the King and the White Rabbit, we cannot seem to agree on what is “very important” and what is “unimportant”
When in doubt, our culture usually finds importance in the facts. When evidence is presented as fact, do you assume it to be true? What is your criteria? Is it the presenter’s credentials or charisma (whether they be a person or an organization)? Is it because the information presented validates what you already believed? Does it require more research or do you accept it on its own? Is it okay to question what is presented? Is it taken out of context? Are you willing to question your own beliefs?
‘…A secret, kept from all the rest,
Between yourself and me.’
‘That’s the most important piece of evidence we’ve heard yet,’ said the King, rubbing his hands; ‘so now let the jury–‘
‘If any one of them can explain it,’ said Alice.
Can we explain what is happening in our world in facts alone? Is it that simple? Is it that complicated?
As we debate about war, poverty, and inequality our judgements, accusations and opinions are revealed in what we choose to share as important on social media and in our conversations. Have we placed too much importance on information (and ego) and not enough importance on the people who are affected? Morality that seeks to find logic as the most important evidence of what is wrong with our world loses sight of what is actually wrong with our world; Aren’t people who are suffering the most important evidence? Can we look at them? Can we see them? Can we hear what they have to say? Isn’t that very important?
If you were to stand in the rubble of someone else’s story, what would you feel?
“We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It’s easy to say ‘It’s not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.’ Then there are those who see the need and respond. I consider those people my heroes.”Fred Rogers
Kerri is an advocate for the introverted activist. Often at a loss for words in person, she writes to make sense of the world and connect with others. She wishes for more curiosity & kindness in the world.