The Irony of Trust

Written by BG Howard

July 10, 2024

Most people have either uttered the infamous words or been quoted the impervious statement, “You know you can trust me” at least once within the past couple of weeks.  The real issue becomes more relevant depending upon the nature of one’s alliance with the issuer of that assertion.  Granted, some degree of trust has to be exercised by virtually every living individual during the course of each day.  From the, seemingly, most insignificant action such as trusting that a chair will be supportive of one’s body weight when sitting to the security of knowing authorities are conditioned to be immediately responsive when placing an emergency phone call. 

Few people ever take the time to contemplate the multitude of areas where dependency upon objects and things takes prominent position without realization of the fact.  Trust is a demonstratively essential part of living life as we know it; even if not readily apparent.  Truthfully, most areas where the trait has to be implemented receive little to no consideration during the actual process.  Everything from trusting that the tires on the vehicle in which you ride will hold air to the mere fact that turning the key in the ignition will result with the engine starting is a matter of trust.

The concept of putting one’s faith in mechanical devices is much more easily accepted than the thought of having to concede that same degree of confidence to people.  Unfortunately, the case with most is that they’ve been seriously let down or gravely disappointed by someone at every given stage of life. 

This is most evident in situations regarding “besties” who become closely associated at a young age and swear a life-long allegiance to one another.  Over the years reality sets in and life begins to happen which invariably alters the course of the relationship.  With the increase in distance, be it geographically or figuratively, the closeness (and thusly, the trust) has a tendency to fade.

Simply put, a person’s gauge of trust is directly related to the respective relationship as well as any direct association with those in whom dependency would possibly be placed. It is truly a difficult thing to come by given the fact most people simply dismiss the quality known as honor when faced with the challenge of sacrificing their comfort level to any degree.  When involving a choice between addressing needs or desires of a friend, that commitment is instinctively weighed against factors designed to determine the significance of the alliance.

The necessity of trusting, within itself, figures as the ultimate oxymoronic action.  To not know whether a person is dependable but have to count on the fact he or she is speaks to the concern of true “blind trust.”  The unwise idea of placing confidence in anyone without knowledge of their personality and moral commitment lends to futility from the start.

Irony lies in the fact any degree of trust safely levied is something that, unfortunately, has no way of being verified prior to extension of the entrustment.  In other words, it’s like turning the keys of your house over to someone you don’t know and expecting them to take care of the place while you’re away for the summer.  Of course, anybody asked will confirm, “Yeah, you can trust me to do what’s right.”  But if everyone was truly as trustworthy as they claim, society would have no need for locks and security systems.  I could be wrong but it’s just something to consider.

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