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Looking forward provides an optimistic view of what is possible. Looking forward also provides hope of improving and enjoying all of the things in life we have been given. Looking forward also provides us the opportunity to adjust along the way and make the necessary changes in one’s life, in our community, and even nationally to make a difference. Learning from the past is just as important; living in the past, not so much. Living in the past can stifle innovation and progress, but learning from the past will make us, hopefully, not repeat the mistakes of the past. 

So what does this all mean? For each of us, it may mean different things, as each one of us lives a different life and is impacted positively or negatively by different conditions of life. Our life’s lenses are different. Together, though, we must find common ground. Common ground for the betterment of society, betterment of our communities, and betterment of this thing called life. Common ground brings us together, especially when we feel we have been heard. Common ground does not mean I win, you lose, but rather taking the best of all ideas, agreeing to disagree along the way, and arriving at a common solution. This does not come at a “win at all costs” approach. 

We all love to win regardless of what it is, but when it comes at the detriment of someone else, it can leave us with a sense of disbelief or a sense of, “Was it worth it?” In many cases, we see this every day, whether it’s being cut off by someone while driving, someone gaming the system, or someone stating something that is just not true. The question though is, if you believe what you are saying, even though it’s not truly accurate, is it a lie? For example, when we watch the news or read the newspaper, there is an approach, as the saying goes: fire first, aim second. In other words, just get the story out there and we will get to the truth and details later. That’s why you hear words such as “allegedly” used a lot in news broadcasts. It doesn’t mean it “is,” rather it means it “could” be true. In the end, the story is still out there, and whether damaging a person or not, the subtleties of the word “allegedly” are lost and misunderstood as truth.  

What is your truth? We all have our belief and truth barometer and know when it tilts. When it comes to politics in the news, social media, tweets, or YouTube, and even in conversation amongst friends, where is your truth barometer? Is the conversation based on talking points that are fed to you? Have you read beyond the headline and deep into the details, looked across multiple points of view, or have you prescribed to just one news channel, one media source, and that video from someone in their car that talks as if what they are saying is factual? Is this ringing true? Which side of truth are you on?

As we continue to move through the politics that seem to be in front of us at every turn, if there is one New Year’s resolution to hold onto, it’s truth. Not someone’s political talking points they want us to regurgitate, not sharing a social media video that we know is untruthful or seems so far out there that it does not agree with your personal truth, or not voting for someone because they have the letter next to their name that you have next to yours. Rather, look at the living condition in your community, the impacts of political decisions on our wallets and our way of life. Stand for truth in conversations with others, and don’t let the rhetoric about poor decisions of a past administration ring loud when in fact, the current administration is doing the very same thing. Don’t lose your truth or integrity because you are on the same team as the decision-makers. It’s time to take our country back based on truth, work together for the greater good, not sacrifice our integrity just to win, and elect those who are about truth. God bless America. spt

Anthony Pirozzi, Jr.

Anthony Pirozzi, Jr. is a Los Angeles Harbor Commissioner. He can be contacted at apirozzi@yahoo.com.

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