THE EDITOR, Sir:
There's a very real reason for 'Jekyll and Hyde', as in the story by Robert Louis Stevenson - the human face of social interaction often develops, sadly, as a most duplicitous one. People learn to present different faces in different situations, and sometimes those 'faces' are very different in nature, sometimes complete opposites.
"He has another side to him." "They aren't what you think they are." "She's a phony." The world of daily conversation reveals such a duality and the true nature of the personalities of some of our greatest leaders, despite our impressions of them, often surprise us by their scope, to say the least, by their inconsistency.
Why does this happen? Why don't people put on the same 'face' in all situations? "Be yourself," we admonish, we suggest, we implore, as a choice. But, on the other side of the coin, why the need for consistency?
Is it because we cannot depend upon the inconsistent? Because there is no lasting security, no value, no real meaning in not being true to oneself? Because, in ourselves, as in others, we value clarity, straightforwardness, and surety?
This upcoming American election seems to present a great example of the problem of such duplicity. This character Mitt Romney seems to be a personality with opposite forces at war with their emergence. But to my way of thinking, the most tragic thing about him is that almost half of us just don't see it.