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Big lies

Big lies

Big lies
January 17
13:54 2019

esus Sanchez Melean

What was the forbidden fruit that Adam and Eve ate at the Garden of Eden? I am sure your answer is: The apple. But you must know that answer is false. Genesis, the book of the bible where the story of the first man and woman is told, doesn’t specify which fruit was eaten. The verse Genesis 2:16-17 only says that Adam and Eve should not eat the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

It is known that a Bible translation ordered by Pope Damasus I in the IV century also contributed to the confusion. The myth of the apple being the forbidden fruit was reaffirmed by several painters during Renaissance times. Compositions by Rubens and Tiziano, two important Renaissance artists, keep the apple at the center of the scenes depicting the original sin.

The apple continues to be a forbidden fruit for many who can’t understand the fact that its bad reputation came from an error in translation. Many others will continue to believe that Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh cut his ear in a moment of madness. German scholars Hans Kaufmann and Rita Wildegans revealed in 2009 that the artist lost a small part of his earlobe, not the whole ear.

Those German scholars confirmed that Van Gogh had mental problems. However, his mental issues had nothing to do with the incident about his ear. Van Gogh lost his ear as a result of a fight with a friend, Gauguin, also a painter. Van Gogh himself made up the self-mutilation story to protect his friend Gauguin from legal problems.

The bad reputation of the apple and the fable about Van Gogh’s ear are part of culture. It is almost impossible to clarify the truth behind those two big lies. However, neither of those lies ever hurt anyone. The problem is when political arguments are built on false premises. Reporters from the New York Times proved that Trump has based his argument for building the wall on lies.

Trump affirmed on national T.V., during prime time, that democrats don’t want to approve funds for border security. That argument is false because democrats have offered and insisted in approving 1.3 billion dollars for surveillance and technology that would help with border security. Democrats oppose the building of a wall but are willing to consider any other solution to improve border security. 

The president said that democrats, specifically Chuck Schumer, refuse to support the wall because they don’t want him to score a political win. Trump said that Democrats supported building a wall in the past. In 2006, twenty-six democratic senators voted in favor of building a 700-mile fence along the Southwestern border. During his 2016 presidential campaign, he disqualified that fence and said it was “such a nothing wall.”

Trump couldn’t find arguments strong enough to establish a connection between the wall and the traffic of drugs. The president said that every week 300 North Americans die because of heroin, “90 percent of which floods across our southern border.” This affirmation doesn’t justify the building of a wall because almost all of this drug enters the U.S. through the ports of entry and not through the dessert.

According to Trump, the wall is necessary because it would help reduce deaths from opioid overdoses. Experts also agree that the wall will have minimal impact in reducing the opioid crisis. Fentanyl, strong painkiller that is also used as a recreational drug, is shipped in packages from China. These packages enter the U.S. through airports and ports in the U.S. and through the border with Canada.

Very few North Americans, beyond his loyal followers, were convinced with the arguments Trump made regarding the need for the wall. A NPR/Ipsos poll found that only 38 per cent of Americans said they believed Trump after his address to the nation. These numbers are good news to me. Everything indicates that only Trump’s base believes the lies he says. The rest of the people knows that the government shutdown is just one of Trump’s show.         

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Edición Virtual | #332 | 14 de Febrero 2019

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