When I was nine years old, I told my best friend Judy that I liked a certain boy in our class. I swore her to secrecy that she wouldn’t tell anyone. She eagerly agreed and so we did the sacred ‘pinky swear’ to seal our secret. In the fourth grade, the ‘pinky swear’ was considered a serious, binding agreement between friends.
The next day at school, I got a lot of ‘I know a secret’ looks from some classmates. A friend of my crush asked me at lunch if it’s true that I liked Eddie. In that moment, I knew I had been betrayed by my best friend. I felt vulnerable and embarrassed but mostly shocked that a trusted friend could turn on me overnight.
Cut to 2013 and some of these feelings from the fourth grade are cropping up again only this time it concerns trust in our government agencies and many of our politicians. I know I should wake up and smell the coffee, but this is the United States of America, for crying out loud.
The never-ending reporting on Benghazi, for instance, continues to allege that we bungled information about a possible terrorist attack on our embassy, and were slow to respond to requests for help from our own people. Americans were not told the truth about the events leading up to the attack and, so far, no heads have rolled. That’s why this story won’t die.
The same goes for the Boston Marathon story which captured worldwide attention only a few weeks ago. From out of nowhere, two young guys, who were making a life in this country, decide to kill Americans. Or so it seemed at first.
Only that wasn’t the case. The CIA, the FBI and whatever other agency that concerns itself with the comings and goings of people from places hostile to the United States, knew about these guys and their radicalized wacky mother, too. Where’s the oversight here? How come they weren’t flagged a long time ago? Like when the mastermind brother returned to the United States after taking a six month vacation in a country that despises ours.
My friend Judy never did fess up to spilling our secret but we both knew I would never trust her again. Telling the truth promotes trust. Pinky swear be damned.
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