True Is True Enough

True is true enough to act. True enough to change. True enough for me to invest some critical degree of energy and imagination in a particular outcome that either makes something stop or makes something start.

That the internet is a publishing platform available to any and everyone with a computer (or smartphone) is true enough for me to blog five times a week.

That the proprietor of the restaurant down the street says homophobic things is true enough to make you stop eating there.

The messianic and royal claims people made about Jesus were true enough for those in authority to bar his way.

True is true enough.

Certainly not true in every case and not true for everyone and not true beyond a shadow of an irrefutable doubt. We are quite skilled at finding the exceptions. We reward the deconstruction of the case. The position of critic and of the puncher-of-holes in the argument is granted a measure of power.

Pilate asked Jesus, “What is truth?” The answer was staring him in the face. That the defendant was stirring up something bigger than a regional sectarian dispute was true, but not true enough for the governor to change his usual course. Something else was truer for Pilate: his job. His calculation of loyalties and PR and the political fallout. Those things were true enough for him to act, and against his stated will.

“Not true enough” is a perfectly defensible assessment. It’s just not the same as “Not true at all.”