Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Errol Morris: There is such a thing as truth

Although NPR's "This I Believe" series no longer airs on the radio, it is continuing online and on XM Radio's "Bob Edwards Show." I really like the latest edition, from documentarian Errol Morris. You can listen to it at NPR's website. Here is an excerpt:

I drew a number of conclusions from this story.

There is such a thing as truth, but we often have a vested interest in ignoring it or outright denying it. Also, it's not just thinking something that makes it true. Truth is not relative. It's not subjective. It may be elusive or hidden. People may wish to disregard it. But there is such a thing as truth and the pursuit of truth: trying to figure out what has really happened, trying to figure out how things really are.

Almost 15 years ago, I stumbled on a story about an innocent man, a man who had been sentenced to die in the Huntsville, Texas, electric chair. And through hard work, luck and a certain amount of pathological obsession, I was able to make the movie The Thin Blue Line and to help get him out of prison.

What kept me going was the belief that there had to be answers to the questions "Did he do it?", "Was he guilty or innocent?", "If he didn't do it, who did?" and that I could find an answer to these questions through investigating.

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