Is lying ever okay?

Pucci asks: Is lying ever okay?

Dogs don’t know how to lie.  It’s not part of our brains.  You’ll hear pet-owners say “My dog is lying.  I fed him an hour ago and he’s whining by his bowl as though he hasn’t been fed yet.”  They’re wrong; the dog’s not lying.  He’s saying he’d like to be fed more food.  That’s true.  The fact that you fed him an hour ago has nothing to do with it!

Similarly, because we don’t know how to lie, we don’t know when we’re being lied to.  We don’t really get it.  So to me, lying is simply ridiculous.  It’s like when people fake that they’re throwing a ball, to get us to run after nothing.  Sure, you get to feel smarter than us for a second, but eventually all it does is train us to not play ball with you.  We won’t learn that you’re lying; we’ll just learn not to chase the ball when you make that arm movement.

So, is it ever okay to lie?  I think the real question is, what’s the reason for the lie?  If you lie out of kindness, I guess that’s okay (When Handsome takes me to a veterinarian’s appointment, I think we’re going to the park, and I’m happy till we get to the front desk.  No problem there).  If you lie for any other reason, you’re just being unkind.  And that does include lying to protect yourself from someone getting mad at you.

As someone who always tells the truth, I’ll say life is a lot easier when you tell the truth.  But if you have to lie, just make sure it’s for a really good reason.

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