To Tell the Truth by Mary E. Latela, January 23, 2017
Finally, a growing number of people agree that lying is not okay. As a result of the heated election period, those who listen closely have noticed that the truth cannot be assured.
What is a lie? According to the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, lying is a complex subject. In early religion classes, a child is taught that one of the directives requires: “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor,” which means you must not lie.
We often use euphemisms to discuss heavy topics. Instead of saying “death” we might say “passes away” or “has passed” or “has gone home to God.”
Sissela Bok, brilliant ethicist, published a striking book: Lying and Moral Choice in Private and Public Life. It was popular in the academic and political spheres. (1978) Lying remains in print today, nearly thirty years after its initial publication, and is widely used in the classroom. Its continuing broad readership pays tribute to the book’s lucidity and good sense. According to :http://infed.org/mobi, Bok’s work has no peer as a serious treatment of a central, but neglected, dimension of moral life.
Telling lies is nearly always morally wrong. Repeated name-calling, boldface untruths, and exaggerations are modes of lying. When our political leaders lie, what should our reaction be? Not to listen… discount whatever that individual says … It is not necessary for the private citizen to fact check information from the government, corporations, churches and institutions of higher learning.
Finally, what if your job situation depends on passing on lies from your superior to others, individuals and groups? Start seeking other employment.