An old tale has it that a man visits a friend and wants to borrow his donkey for the day. The friend tells him he’s sorry but he lent his donkey out. The man leaves the house, but as he goes he hears the donkey braying in the back yard. He rushes back to the friend’s house, knocks on the door, and the friend opens the door and says ”Yes?” The man says, ”I thought you said you lent your donkey out for the day!” ”Yes, I did,” replies the friend. ”But I can hear your donkey braying in the back yard.” And the friend replies: ”Who are you going to believe, the donkey or me?”
According to President Donald Trump, the crowds for his inauguration easily eclipsed that of President Obama. He said: ”It looked honestly like a million and a half people, whatever it was, it was, but it went all the way back to the Washington Monument.” The White House press secretary Sean Spicer, accused the media of spreading falsehoods about the size of the inauguration. Fortunately, we have photos to make up our own minds (below). Who are you going to believe, the Trump Administration, or your own eyes?
Fascist, Bolshevik, and other authoritarian governments routinely told their people how things went down in their countries, while the reality was something quite different. As educators, we need to teach our children to think critically, to examine the evidence, and not simply to take what someone has said at face value just because they bellow it loudly enough. At no time in U.S. history was this more important than right now. Teachers, help your students examine the truth of things in government very carefully over the next four years!