"Dostoyevsky was right: lie to everyone but yourself. 'The man who lies to himself...cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and others." E.J. Levy, "Of Liars," in After Montaigne: Contemporary Essayists Cover The Essays.
One of the six sources of Unitarian Universalism is the "Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love."
"Can you give me some examples of these prophetic men and women," Don asked. "How about Dostoyevsky and Montaigne,: I replied.
"Who," said Don?
"Dostoyevsky and Montaigne," I said again insistently.
"Never heard of them," said Don, "and they sound like foreigners."
"They were," said I, "a Russian and a Frenchman."
"True Americans are supposed to hate both, aren't we," asked Don seriously.
"The Russians, I was told as a kid, might drop an atomic bomb on us at any minute, and we changed the name of French Fries, to Freedom Fries back when France wouldn't support our war with Iraq."
"Yeah, we've been told to fear and hate all kinds of people. The names change but the tool is the same. Now we're suppose to fear Mexicans and Muslims, and whoever else fits Trump's purposes, because these boogeymen appeal to his base. Got him enough votes to win the Presidency."
"I like Trump. I voted for him," said Don. "He's the only politician who says what he means and means what he says. You don't get any double talk from him."
"He lies," I said, "to protect himself and rile people up. His lies are losing him respect here at home and around the world, and I believe that he is even losing respect for himself."
"Are you kidding," said Don, "Trump loves himself more than anything. That's all he talks about is how great he is and how the media and the congress pick on him. He seems to have more self love than anybody I know."
"He doesn't appear to practice our UU second principle, justice, equity, and compassion in human relations. He does the opposite promoting America first, and bragging about getting the best deal, and stigmatizing people he tells citizens want to harm them so he can protect them."
"Well," said Don, "this conversation is unproductive as far as I am concerned and I've got to go."
"Be well," I said, "and remember don't lie to yourself, because all that you've got is your soul."
"Fuck you," said Don laughing as he walked off.