What To Do With The Lies

Many people holding luggage file into a train with guards to protect them. You and your family happen to have the same train ride as all the other people. As people file in and get seated you look around and find many people looking terrified. You’re confused and ask “Papa where are we going?” His response was a family vacation. As a small, naive child you believe his word. However, it isn’t until later you realize he was lying all along. There is always a point in your life where you’ve been lied to by your parents or guardian or even older sibling, then only realize they lied to you later in life. This point of realization is one of many important points in maturity in one’s life, so how do people react to the lies after they know the truth?

In the graphic novel They Called Us Enemy the main character, George Takei, and his family were taken from their home by soldiers to go live in internment camps during WWII. While I was reading and watching young George I realized how gullible and innocent young children were and wondered if everyone used to be or are like that.

As I watched George’s story continue I saw him mature and become more informed of what had really happened back then. After realizing his father had lied to him, George did his research on the internment camp, and had after dinner talks with his dad. Now that George had realized the full truth of what had happened during his childhood, George began trying to change the world and become known. He got many parts in movies, was an activist for Japanese Americans, and even met with past Presidents. George reacted to the truth by changing many people and maybe even the world.

Another person that is a great example for how to react to the lies we’ve been told would be Shigeo Kageyama from Mob Psycho 100. Even though Shigeo is a fictional character, the character was most likely influenced by real world actions and personalities, and people can learn a lot from fictional content no matter what. In Mob Psycho 100, Shigeo is a middle schooler with extremely powerful psychic powers (an esper) who can destroy evil spirits. Shigeo was lied to and tricked by Reigen Arataka (Shiego’s mentor) to exorcize spirits for him so he could make money. Reigen lies and says he is an esper that can teach him, but it’s implied that Shigeo knows Reigen is lying. What’s important is what Shigeo does in response to Reigen’s lying. Shigeo decides to change himself. Even though Reigen lies and tries to manipulate Shigeo into doing psychic work for him, most of the lies actually make Shigeo realize many things about himself, and he tries to change those things.

Here Shigeo realizes he likes a girl, but doesn’t want to rely on his psychic powers to impress the girl. Shigeo learns other things from Reigen as well, such as not using his psychic power to harm other people, joining other after school activities, and that he should make friends since in the beginning he didn’t have any. Here Shigeo decided to change himself versus George who decided to try to change the world after getting lied to.

Everyone has been lied to whether it was from their parents or their mentor, a lie is still a lie. However, what really matters is what you are going to do after learning it was a lie and after learning the truth. You can change the world like George Takei. You can change yourself like Shigeo Kageyama. It’s up to you what to do with your newly found knowledge. What will you change?

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