As we approach the end of April, a month that started with the celebration of falsehood and ends with National Honesty Day, it is important to look back and acknowledge the truths we have learnt. National Honesty Day, which falls on the 30th of April, was created by M. Hirsh Goldberg to encourage communication in politics, relationships, consumer relations and historical education. Let's go through these in turn.
Climate change has been something that politicians have globally tried to brush over since the alarming predictions started to concern scientists in the 70's. It seems as though this month, the truth is beginning to emerge. With the activist group Extinction Rebellion gluing their backsides to the glass in the House of Commons and with the extraordinary words of Greta Thunburg echoing around Europe, it has become simply impossible for politicians to not speak the truth and to address the catastrophe we face. Although it may have taken Sir David Attenborough's persuasion, it could be the case that April 2019 will be known as the month where the country, and maybe the world, started to fight on the side of survival. On this Honesty Day, may we hope for politicians to stand up and fight for us also.
I, for one, always encourage honesty in relationships. This month it was both my sisters hen-do and her wedding. Honesty played a huge part in the Hen- do, from Mr & Mrs to Truth or Dare, there were many secrets that were unveiled between friends and family. I must mention, however, that playing 'Never Have I Ever' with you mother may not be a good idea- sometimes too much honesty is unnecessary. When it came to the wedding I have never heard such honest vows. There were no promises made to one that the other could not keep, and as they looked deep into each others eyes and swore to always 'have each others back' there was no doubt in the whole room that this was their pure truth. This is what we all want, right? Someone who wants us for who we honestly are and can take our flaws and roll with them. On this Honesty Day, may we tell our loved one's why we love them and how they enrich our lives.
In terms of consumer relations, I have a story which perfectly depicts the essence of this day through a truthful exchange between producer and consumer. A friend of mine works for a popular tea company. A few weeks ago he attended a consumer research group in which you watch people through a two way mirror while they are asked questions about the brand. One of the people, we shall call them Consumer X, were asked what they thought of the tea and they replied 'they think they're posh, but they're not posh. They use the queen to flog their products...and she's a thieving S***'. Now, as much as it hurts me to write such words about the Queen, the honesty here must be commended. On this Honesty Day, may we have the courage and boldness of Consumer X to speak our absolute truth.
Historically, women could not vote. In fact, 2018 marked the 100th anniversary of The Representation of the People Act which first gave some women the rights to vote. 100 years on, in April 2018, legislation was passed whereby large and mid-sized companies were legally required to publish a snapshot of their employee pay, highlighting the gender pay gap that is so prevalent in our current society. Not only does this new legislation require companies to be completely transparent, it necessarily means that they are encouraged to pay all genders on an equal footing. One year on, we hoped to see an improvement of the alarming figures that emerged in April 2018. However, in many cases, the gap has widened. Rather than considering this information as a step back, it must be understood that changes such as these take time; it must also encourage us to try harder to create and maintain equality in every walk of life. On this honesty day may we use figures such as these to work harder, to believe in ourselves more and to fuel that fire within ourselves to make a difference.
In the US, where Honesty Day is generally celebrated, people are allowed to ask each other questions and, providing they both know what day it is, they should expect radically honest answers. Today is the day to tell that person why you love them, to write to your local MP about what is worrying you, to seek out the truth in the history we are taught and to tell the supermarket just how crap their own brand peanut butter is.