Shepards PI

Stephen Jiminez releases a book that describes his investigation of the Mathew Shepard case. Aaron Hicklin considers the mythology. Can it be that a story like this is published as a kind of ‘victory lap’ to express satisfaction with all the ‘good’ that the lie accomplished? Does it reinforce the practice of telling fictitious nonfiction stories for the purpose of advancing whatever narrative is fashionable? Any circle can be squared. All it requires is sufficient distortion of the facts. Withhold a few here. Twist a few there. Completely negate reality whenever you have sufficient cultural cover to do so. After all, history is written by the winners. The trouble is that after it goes on for long enough, you don’t have any culture left. You have only factions that square off against each other. Neither camp is left with any reason whatsoever to believe anything the other camp says. The only thing real becomes power. The postmodern dream is accomplished. Then there is this story, that in 1897 the Indiana House of Representatives unanimously passed a measure redefining the area of a circle and the value of pi. (House Bill no. 246, introduced by Rep. Taylor I. Record.) This could make arithmetic easier for our children. How could anyone but a child-hater oppose it?


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