I remember one of my high school English teachers explaining to us that truth is the first casualty of war.
Sacrifices during wartime make sense. But if a government makes serious miscalculations about the nature of an enemy and the extent of a threat, and then refuses to face the data, soldiering on with measures that trample over the lives of its citizens, one could be justified in asking if we are being compelled to join in a false crusade with grave consequences to the human family.
If you haven’t yet watched the HBO miniseries Chernobyl, it’s incredibly relevant to this moment.
There are manifold ways to mislead others. One is by understating a threat, and another is by overstating it. Still another is by refusing to change course when the truth appears down an unexpected road. But once the truth reveals itself, and you insist on keeping it concealed: look out. The truth has no regard for your attempts to suppress it. It’s a losing battle every time.
May our first fidelity be to the truth, discovered along the pathways of humility and generosity. Let us be convinced that only on that basis can we serve the common good. All other paths lead to deadly illusions.