Shouting a Lie Doesn’t Make It Less False

The school budget vote is coming up on Tuesday, which means (you guessed it) the “Vote No” crowd has broken the glass on their “In Case of Emergency” boxes and removed their pitchforks and torches. You can’t drive around town without seeing their signs along the side of the road.

This, despite the fact that the school budget this year has reduced the local tax burden by 1.69 percent.

Honestly, there are times I think the “Vote No” crowd would not be satisfied until the school district is earning a surplus and paying them to send kids to school. I know it’s not the most charitable thought, and I know there are some of them who must have very heartfelt (if possibly misguided) reasons for what they believe, but we’re in the middle of a pandemic, and I have little patience for people trying to make a big deal about a budget decrease, painting it like an increase instead.

Except that seems to be a growing trend, especially at the highest echelons of government. If you just state a lie with authority and confidence, there are people who will believe that lie in the face of all contrary evidence. Whether it’s the crowd size at an inauguration (which doesn’t really matter) or the trend of COVID-19 in the country (which very much does). All you have to do, it seems, is give people something they can believe in. An “authority” to point to. It works for pretty much anything you want it to: climate change, flat earthers, anti-vaccination, conspiracy theorists, and more.

Entire industries have been built around this propensity of people to believe what they want to believe, and to look for evidence that will support that belief, no matter how tenuous. Yes, you could say the same thing about religion, but the whole basis of religion is outside the realm of simple facts. It requires faith and belief in God, a being whose existence can’t be proven one way or another. And in many ways, people who buy these blatant lies and choose to believe them are putting the people who spout them up on a similar god-like pedestal.

But I don’t want to get into that. For today, I just want to focus on how this is impacting our schools on a local level. I’ll worry about the rest of the mess after Tuesday, once the school budget has passed. If you’re local, please remember to vote on Tuesday July 14th. You can still request absentee ballots until Thursday July 9th at 5pm. After that, you have to vote in person. This is a reasonable budget, regardless of how many signs out there want to say it isn’t. Forcing the community to go through another round of budget meetings out of spite seems like the worst justification for a misleading campaign I can think of.

Let’s vote this budget through on the first time. Vote yes!


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