The Integral Role of Deceit
Have you ever lied to a loved one to spare his/her feelings? Have you ever smiled when all you really wanted to do was cry? Have you ever used stereotyping to your advantage or disadvantage? If you can answer yes to any of these questions, then ask yourself how often? I for one do at least one of the aforementioned on a daily basis and have come to realize that these are nothing but glorified lies. Lies? How can dressing up as Santa Claus to prove to my six year old niece that he does exist in fact be a lie? We all know that Santa Claus does not exist and if he did would be quite terrifying. I mean an old fat man infiltrating your home on Christmas Eve is kind of creepy. This is just one of many examples in which deceit can be used in a positive way. Unfortunately, for every positive use that there are for a lie multiple negative uses exist. Lies are a necessary evil that plays a pivotal role in our daily life whether it is sparing friends and family from harsh realities, diffusing volatile situations or combating stereotypes.
The good definitely outweighs the bad when it comes to the infamous “white lie” and using it to spare a loved one from heartache is rather admirable. The example that Ericsson gives us in her essay “The Ways We Lie” is of a sergeant in the Vietnam War who lies about the death of a fellow soldier so that his family can receive continued benefits instead of the lump sum pittance the military provides widows and children. This is just one possible scenario in which lying can play a positive role. My example of this type of lie is slightly less admirable, but constructive nonetheless. A cousin of mine and his girlfriend recently decided to take a break from their relationship. During the so-called break she got a job working at the same club as I am employed. I had no problem with this. When Kenny decided the break should be permanent I noticed she started to develop a relationship with a co-worker of mine. Then...
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