The Truth About Lying

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The Truth About Lying

By | November 2012
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Lies have powerful effects on all of us based on the lecture “The Truth about Lying” by Judith Viorst. At an early age, I found out that lies could change our opinion about the people that lie to us and their credibility. It is not necessary to lie since if we feel that the truth might hurt the other person, a polite silence should suffice. As Viorst Says, “I suffer most from the misconception that children can’t take the truth” (135). This reminded me of how hurt and devastated I was when I found my parents playing Santa Claus and putting the present by my bed. They explained to me that this was a very old Spanish custom in celebration of the occasion when the Three Wise Men (Spanish version of Santa Claus), having discovered the birth place of Jesus, arrived bearing gifts for the Child. When the Church of England (Episcopal Church) broke off with Rome and the Pope, they changed Christmas, and the nativity was replaced by a Christmas tree and the Three Wise Men were replaced by Santa Claus. While their explanation was a logical one, it nevertheless didn’t change the fact that my trust in them had been betrayed. They lost their credibility for the time being. It would have been better if they had told me the truth. There were other deceptions which were the tooth Fairy, the boogie man, the Ouija, etc. All these lies made me wonder if I would ever be able to trust them in anything they said. As I look around, I realize that they are not the only ones who did this, and everyone seemed to play the same kind of game. As I got older, lying got more sophisticated; now, it was called social lies. Society required mendacity, which is the art of lying in order to find socially acceptable ways of saying things. Viorst described this kind of lie in her lecture by saying that: Most of the people I’ve talked with say that they find social lying acceptable. They think it’s the civilized way for folks to behave. Without these little white lies, they say, our relationships...

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