Thursday, February 10, 2011

On Telling the Truth

Facts are the enemy of truth.
Don Quixote

Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

I had the privilege of attending NARAL Pro-Choice America's annual luncheon today.  The event was hosted by Felicity Huffman of Desperate Housewives.  It also featured speeches by the awesome Nancy Keenan, Executive Director of NARAL and Kamala Harris, California's new Attorney General.  (They are calling her the female Obama!)

These women are AMAZING, but I have to say that hands-down the best speech of the meal was given by Roz Jonas, who told her PERSONAL STORY of a harrowing, illegal, "backroom" abortion at age 19.  It brought me to tears.

STORIES.  Real, personal, authentic stories are all we've got, especially in this Connected Age when no one trusts anyone even though everyone is a "friend."

All of your favorite movies, songs, documentaries, and conversations are driven by TRUTH - a fearless expression of the real, hard, beautiful, tender, underbelly of life.

My dear friend and colleague, Mark Rovner, Principal of Sea Change Strategies puts it this way, "there is a real "crisis of content" in our sector -- we are really good at building new pipes for content, but often pay too little attention to whether the content is great or even good."

He's right.

We have to dig deeper.  We have to EXPOSE ourselves and SHARE the truth of our lives.

Only real experience and vulnerabilty can MOVE us and other people to change.




James Rohrs said...


It takes a special kind of person to write a post on NARAL and open it with a quote from Jesus Christ.

I subscribe to your feed, and am very disappointed that you are using examples from this organization.

You rightly point out that stories matter. I suggest you read Unplanned, by Abby Johnson, former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas. I also invite you to think of the millions of stories that won't be told because of women who were too selfish to carry a baby for 9 months and put it up for adoption. Instead, they ended its life, to save them, what? 9 months of discomfort?

I am unsubscribing from your feed today.

Anonymous said...

It's great to hear of the strong women we have in leadership and gives me inspiration as a young woman.

I hope to read future posts that elaborate more on capturing these stories.

Anonymous said...

I think James missed your point entirely.

Despite the event I agree that organizations have but a moment to catch a persons attention. We have lost our ability to listen to facts or pay attention for long periods of time. It is a consequence of growing up watching too much MTV and the 3-5 minute videos.

It is stories that move us and call us to action. I am sure James has a story to tell himself.

Anonymous said...

I've been saying for some time now that the anti-choice lobby has done a far better job of framing this issue than the pro-choice.

When I was in my early twenties I met a 40something woman who had nearly died from an illegal abortion in the 60's. She was a woman of grace and compassion and quite one of the best mothers I have ever known (she had four children). Her story made me adamantly pro-choice.

What is never said is that this issue is more about money and control than life. After all, the wealthy have always had access to a safe medical procedure.

Regrettably NARAL may have already lost this war.

Kivi Leroux Miller said...

James is right about one thing - you are a special person. You are absolutely right about truth telling and its power. But when you expose yourself that way you also have to prepare for the lashing from people who judge you because of those stories. It's not an easy thing.

Btw this is the second time this week that a fellow blogger has been "threatened" by an anti-choice reader with unsubbing. Like that's going to change our views and the way we express them! Please. Wish them well on their way with their closed little minds that are apparently too small to digest opposing points of view and carry on sister!

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