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The Light of Truth | Why Truth Counts in Legal Advocacy

Truth in Legal Advocacy.jpgTruth counts - in spirit. "You shall not bear false witness" (Exodus 20:16).

In courts: "Swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth - so help me God."

In song: "This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine...Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine."

In our actions. I've been blessed to represent clients for over forty years. So many times, this involves grappling with the truth. Distinguishing as best we can between fact and fiction, truth and falsehood.

While all cases have their strengths and weaknesses, truth should not be a victim of advocacy. The commitment to truth is a constant - a daily commitment - a reminder to our conscience.

In the words of Deuteronomy 30: 15-16:

"See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess."

The words of Deuteronomy are estimated to be 2700 years old. They ring as true today as when written.

So again, as in all things, truth counts. It's important that it not be lost in advocacy - however noble the cause. Truth should never be sacrificed. When we use falsehood to gain advantage, we're selling off our own integrity.

This reflection arises from contemplation and experience. It is neither a judgment of myself nor others. It's an important statement for living, for service to others and even for practicing law in sometimes contentious matters.

Truth frees us. The amazing thing about truth is how all it takes is one instant to cut past all the lies. While lies darken our vision and sow confusion, the light of truth can make things clear in the blink of an eye.

"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

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