Rev. Austin Miles
Stop the presses--kill the story!
By Rev. Austin Miles
May 23, 2015

There is a wise saying: "If something seems too good to be true, it probably IS."


Again if something (travel deal, free vacation, sure fire deal or investment opportunity), or some ONE is too good to be true, it probably is indeed too good to be true. How did I miss this?

Several have inquired what happened to my recent column that suddenly vanished from my website and Renew America? It was a beautiful account of a woman who supposedly had worked through extreme difficulties to make a success of her life.

Being one who likes people, always looking for the best in everybody, placed me in a vulnerable position to be an excellent target for those who simply want to use me. This happened big-time when I wrote and published a story about a woman that seemed, yes, too good to be true.

It turned out that she had misled me and downright lied in the interview with me. She carried herself with such class and dignity and was so very soft spoken, that an email she sent to me, right after the piece was published, shattered the persona that she exhibits and who I believed her to be.

Her email was totally disrespectful (which shocked me) and displayed a hidden side of her that could never have been anticipated. That "beautiful soft-spoken woman" that I had met and interviewed twice was only one part of her two personalities.

Obviously some of the facts she challenged, which were and are in my notes, suddenly brought to her the fear that her exaggerated truth would come out about some of her stated experiences.

For the first time ever, after many years of writing, at my direction the story was scrubbed from my website and Renew America. Fortunately I was able to halt the publication of the piece on our wire, just as they were about to publish it worldwide.

Many times in counseling, a spouse is dumped, as the other spouse runs away with someone else, leaving the tearful tossed leftover bewildered because of the perception of the person he or she married.

This happens too often. How does such a heartbreaking betrayal happen? Answer: That spouse was like a created portrait hanging on the wall, not the actual person, but how that person was perceived. Now I know that feeling.

A few years ago there was a couple in the church that I was part of at that time,with an extraordinary love story about how he was dying of kidney failure, needed a new kidney but willing donors were not a match. Then it turns out that his girl-friend was a perfect match, the transplant took place and they were married. However I did not live happily ever after.

The piece was given to a local newspaper and published on the front page. The day it was published that couple ran to the editor of that paper and said it was all false information. What?

The reason they attacked my story
making me look bad, was that the date was given when they met and began a most intimate relationship. This horrified the couple when they realized the implication of the story.

The man involved was at that time deeply involved with another woman at the church, before, during and after the date they told me they met and were totally together. So he was two-timing on all counts and wanted that hushed up at my expense.

It seems that no matter how sick or disabled a man is, one part of his body is constantly ready this will not go further.

So to cover their own sins, this couple attacked the one who told their story with their encouragement. They made it clear that they wanted me to write that story. Notice how sins and lies of one or two can spread and infect everybody around them.

Purposely, no names were given in this story. They will get no further publicity from me. There will be very few, if any, portraits of Christians in my future stories. Twice burned is enough.

I will finally exercise a tip I learned in journalism school which should have sunk in from the start: "Don't just spotlight someone that seems perfect without looking for and finding something negative."

An old Pennsylvania Dutch saying is: "Too Soon Oldt-und Too Late Schmart."

So be it.

© Rev. Austin Miles


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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Rev. Austin Miles

Sadly, Rev. Austin Miles passed away on April 12, 2023, at age 89. His memorial service was held June 3, 2023. His obituary can be read here.

He has broken many major stories including the required study of Islam in the public schools, and reviews books, movies and concerts which brought him an award from University of California at Fullerton for Critical Review. He was a writer/researcher and technical consultant for the multi-award winning series "Ancient Secrets of The Bible," which debuted on CBS TV and has been in constant re-runs since.


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