1. Is it the truth?
2. Is it fair to all concerned?
3.Will it build goodwill and better friendships?
4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
The four way test world-wide is a moral code for personal and business and social relationships. The test can be
applied to almost any aspect of life. The test was scripted by Herbert J. Taylor an American from Chicago as he set out to save the Club Aluminum Products Distribution Company from bankruptcy. It was later adopted by Rotary International ,
the global federation of Rotary service clubs .
In the early 1930s Herbert J. Taylor set out to save the Club Aluminum Products distribution company from bankruptcy.He believed himself to be the only person in the company with 250 employees who had hope. His recovery plan started with changing the ethical climate of the company.He explained:
The first job was to set policies for the company that would reflect the high ethics and morals God would want in any undertaking. If the people who worked for Club Aluminum were to think right, I knew they would do right. What we needed was a simple, easily remembered guide to right conduct – a sort of ethical yardstick- which all of us in the company could memorize and apply to what we thought, said and did.
I searched through many books for the answer to our need, but the right phrases eluded me, so I did what I often do when I have a problem I can’tanswer myself: I turn to the One who has all the answers. I leaned over my desk, rested my head in my hands and prayed. After a few moments, I looked up and reached for a white paper card. Then I wrote down the twenty-four words that had come to me: 1. Is it the truth? 2. Is it fair to all concerned? 3. Will it build goodwill and better friendships? 4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
I called it “The Four-Way Test of the things we think, say or do.”
First testing it out on himself, he realized that the first question, “Is it the truth?” was barely applied in his business’ day-to-day operations. After 60 days, Herbert J. Taylor decided to share those principles with the four department directors of his company (each had a different religious faith). Those four directors validated his
principles, and rolled it out company-wide.
When studying his advertising statements, he realized how very little could be stated as “truth,” so a lot of copywriting adjustments were made to realign the company’s messages with a sense of genuine truth. The aggressiveness towards competition was
also scrutinized and eliminated.
In 1932, Taylor’s company was on the edge of bankruptcy.20 years later, by applying the Four-Way Test, the company repaid its debts, generously paid its
shareholders, and had a healthy financial balance.
How this relates to #endsars protest
If we are to apply the four way test
1.Are the demands,agitations of the protesters true? The answer is yes
2. Is it fair to all concerned? This is debatable because protest always disrupts people’s way of life. The aims of protest is to disrupt normal life to shine light on issues that affect the protesters and this will definitely encroach on life of those who are not on the same page with it consequent inconveniences especially as it relates to their own rights to personal liberty, freedom of movement e.t.c so striking a balance here can be tricky
3. Will it build goodwill and increase friendship? Yes. This is because majority of Nigerians including the government agree that our policing and security system has collapsed and there’s need for reforms, what we have failed to do is implement these reforms despite past agitations and promises. So if this protest can lead to the reforms as it seems to then it will better goodwill and friendship among Nigerians living in a more secured society
4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned? Obviously a reformed police force and improved security will beneficial to Nigeria and the world at large.
From the foregoing one can say that using the four way test the #Endsars is a good thing but it. Should not be politicized as this will lead to division. Some people are already belittling the issue to be about president Buhari a constitutionally elected president whose tenure will end in 2023. Issues of security have implications beyond election cycles and without security there can be no elections. Already some of the protesters are towing this path.
What is needed now is caution and cool headedness. Protesters should not get carried away and overstep the boundaries of rule of law. For the government, security agencies and anti protesters should exercise restraint to avoid clashes.
God Bless Nigeria and Nigerians.we are all in this together.