To the Editor:

Truth, we know, can be subjective. It can be very personal, and it is most personal when an increasing number of Americans are living in fear and terror.

It becomes subjective when those selected to protect are actually intent on destruction and dissolution.

Truth is particularly personal when those whose mission it is to give voice to the voiceless are reviled and disdained for the truth reporting.

It is also personal when diversity and minority rights and concerns become negative and dangerous words and ideas instead of realities are celebrated, encouraged and protected.

Truth is painfully personal when those who cling to hope and have spent a lifetime struggling are told they do not need or deserve higher wages, labor protections or health care.

It is painful when human rights become a pawn of the powerful and are given only lip service and then calculatingly discarded when they are “inconvenient” or become an obstacle to profiteering without concern for human harm, global or environmental suffering.

Yes, truth is sadly personal when the great goodness of a country built on the principle of welcoming the stranger and the vulnerable now tells the world and those in most desperate need that we have no compassion, no room, no concern for your plight.

Truth can be difficult and harsh but when it calls to the worst fears in us, to limitation, to greed and suspicion, bigotry and blame, then something is deeply wrong with this “truth.”

We must reclaim each truth personally and ask more of ourselves. We cannot simply blame misguided, unstable or corrupt leadership for what is untrue.

We are each and all better when we are open and generous, when we care for neighbors near and far, when we stretch beyond our narrow boundaries of concern, when we feel the heartache of those who are different or easily misunderstood or misrepresented.

Let us demand the truth that calls to all of “our better angels,” a truth that elevates and brings light to our common humanity.

We must demand this first of ourselves, and then, perhaps our leaders might be listening and learning from “We the people.”

Margaret Kilmartin

Southwest Harbor

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