When Famous People Lie...

As I drank my morning coffee and browsed my Google Reader account for compelling stories to read on this overcast morning, I came across a NY Times article titled, 'Three Cups of Tea' Author Defends Book.

If you aren't familiar with the book Three Cups of Tea, I'll give you a brief summary: it's a memoir about Greg Mortenson's time in Pakistan and Afghanistan and what inspired him to create the Central Asia Institute charity that works to fund and build schools primarily for girls in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. This summer I picked up the young reader's edition in hopes that it might be a book I could teach to my Reading students. Though I decided against teaching it, I did love the book. It was a beautiful and inspirational story.

But due to a snippet on last night's 60 Minutes, today the headlines declare that Mortenson now has to defend some of the truth in his book. As I read the article, I imagined that people will be outraged about the possibilities that some of his book (a best-seller) might have been fabricated. As I read the article I wasn't outraged; instead I was dumbfounded--why should this surprise us? Why should it surprise us that he may have fudged on a few details of his narrative? We (common, non-famous, average joe folk) do it all of the time. Is it the morally correct thing to do? No. But what I'm trying to get at is sometimes we read books, listen to music and watch movies and take it all for absolute truth when, in all reality, it can't be absolute truth. We're humans...we have an inclination to fabricate. Nothing is absolute truth...well, nothing except the Bible.

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