Friday, May 12, 2006

Don't Just Trust Me, Watch Me

A couple of nights ago during a statistics exam my professor marched up to a students desk and broke the testing silence with a " How could you do this? You are taking a test!" He was shocked to discover that the gentleman was cheating, He briskly walked down the row of seats and asked the gentleman to meet him outside. The suspect followed and the door swung wide open behind him for the whole class to hear...

" What were you thinking?" (mumble mumble) "How am I supposed to know that?!" (mumble) "No really How?! It's an honest question." (silence) "Don't you understand that you signed an agreement and you have broken the rules. And when you break that trust your word is no longer good. It means nothing!" (more awkward silence) "This is a society that relies on trust, and when you can't be trusted then you can't function [in the society]"

"Damn, Mr. Waldron is so right" I thought. He's kind of weird and bitter but he's right. We do, as a society rely on trust. We are born to trust that our mothers or a mother will nurture us and everyday we trust that the alarm will go off, the bus will come on time and professors trust that the students won't cheat. As Mr. Waldron flunked the kid outside who cheated on the exam I continued to wonder "how can he function again?"

In a way all people, like professors have their own personal "zero tolerance" policies towards cheating because to tolerate dishonesty means that you are expecting it or allowing it, which no one wants. There is no simple answer for someone trying to regain trust, but one way I have found to be effective is to stop "trying" and start doing. Everyone likes to hear a comeback story. Alluding (for the last time) to the Mayorga/De La Hoya fight two weeks ago we can see that the only way Mayorga can gain our support back is by facing Oscar again and this time completely destroying him so that no critic or fan can doubt him again.

Some people say that "a picture is worth a thousand words" but I don't think any amount of words can sum up the message of an image that one's actions can project. So whether you are training for a rematch, enrolling in a new Statistics course or trying to gain someone's trust back, remember that you can't just tell us how you're going to beat your opponent or tell us you won't cheat on exams. Follow the familiar words of the universally recognized sneaker slogan and "Just Do It".

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