why lying is the glue that holds our society together

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Editorial and Opinion  |  House: Booksie Classic

An article about lying in our modern society and how we have become dependant on the ability to tell a fib.

Why lying is the glue that holds are society together.

Okay, I know that sounds like a bit of a heavy subject so we’ll start off with something simple. How much do you think you lie in an average week? A lot, a little or does it just depend. Do you feel there are situations where it's necessary to lie? I wonder, have you lied today? Now, I will state that I don’t think that lying is necessarily a bad thing, for one if you got rid of lying then there would be a mob of angry actors banging on your door. I just think we have become to reliant on lying and too paranoid of being told a lie.

First of all there are three types of lying: the standard ‘the dog ate my homework’ lie, the kinder ‘no of course that dress doesn’t make you look bigger than Alabama’ white lie and the ‘no I didn’t eat all the sweets,’ when you’re thinking, ’there’s still one left in the box’ lying by omission. Now, there are many situations in which we justify lying but no matter the scenario the motive never seems to change: protection. Whether it be for ourselves, others or maybe our pride, it seems that we will happily fudge the truth to protect what we value. But are we possibly becoming over protective?

I think a way to demonstrate this is to look at the extremes. Firstly, reality tv or more specifically Love Island. For those of you who don’t know what love island is I personally think you’re lucky but to explain it simply, it’s a reality show in which everyone sleeps with everyone then tells the entire public about it. The contestants who go on the show spend roughly eight weeks being filmed almost constantly with no privacy what so ever, meaning they have no opportunity to be dishonest. The tv show itself is popular but hasn’t been without its issues, two ex-islanders have committed suicide with many suggesting that the pressures of having their whole life on view caused to much strain emotionally.

On the other hand, you have people who lie constantly: con-artists. For those of you who’ve never seen an Ocean’s movie, a con-artist is someone who lies for a living; they exploit people by lying to them, earning their trust then taking whatever they want (normally money). Con-artists are highly skilful because instead of thinking of a lie and then convincing you of it they tailor the lie to the person. For example, say a con-artist wanted to steal someone’s car. Well, instead of playing a real game of grand theft auto they would tailor a lie so that they could leave without causing any suspicion until they’re long gone. One way to do this is to go to a restaurant or party that has a chauffeur service where they park your car for you. You wear appropriate clothes for the party, tell the real chauffeur that someone’s keyed one of the cars so that they leave and you pose as the chauffeur meaning that someone hands their car keys and car over to you without a second thought. By the way I’m not some master criminal I just stole that from a movie but what I’m trying to say is that being dishonest might pay financially but the consequence is a life spent being paranoid, distrusting and for many alone.

Finally, the last example I will look at is not an extreme lie but a mass one. Yes, I’m discussing our favourite fat breaking and enterer: Santa Clause. The story we all know is that on Christmas eve Santa comes around on his sleigh, squeezes down your chimney, eats your food and puts presents under your Christmas tree. Meanwhile your parents only bother to get you one gift and basically coast off Santa’s work. However, I would hope that most of us know that this isn’t completely true. The Christmas lie is one that spans decades and has now become a social obligation, not to mention as soon as your child realises the rouse they have to be sworn to secrecy of the highest level. Santa is one of the best kept secrets and personally this is a lie that I’m happy I was told. Christmas was then and still is in my opinion the best part of the year, and if lying brings a little more magic to a child’s Christmas then I’m happy to tell a little porky here or there.

I might sound like I’m just gabbling on but the point I’m trying to make is that these extremes all have the same problem: trust. If you’re constantly honest then nobody needs to trust you anymore meaning the fundamental of having any kind of long-lasting relationship has no value anymore. To say, ‘I trust you’, to someone who is completely honest has as much value as saying, ‘I would lend you a pound if you needed it’. When you’re dishonest constantly you take advantage of people’s trust and when they realise, you’re a liar, there will be very few if any people left who trust you at all. Even white lies – if used to frequently – causes a ‘the boy who cried wolf’ effect where even when you do truly mean what you say, no one believes you anymore. The truth isn’t always the best thing, sometimes it hurts, sometimes it doesn’t reflect our true nature, but at the same time sometimes the truth does more good than any lie could.

So, to answer my previous question have we become over protective of the truth, in my opinion yes. Honesty is not always the best policy and sometimes you have to except that there will always be moments when it’s better to lie. We should not champion the truth or look down on those who lie but simply trust that in this world our truths are ours to share a, but most importantly, ours to keep.


Submitted: May 14, 2020

© Copyright 2021 hannahf. All rights reserved.

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LE. Berry

I lie to myself everyday...does that make me a better or a worse person in relation to society? Loved this thoughtful piece hannahf.

Sat, May 16th, 2020 12:06am

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LE. Berry if you lie to yourself everyday then you are not a better or worse person in society, in fact it simply makes you part of it. As I have mentioned in this piece there are always reasons why we want or need to lie, even to ourselves and no one can judge you for that because we've all been there. However if you are lying to yourself regularly you may want to take some time to understand why you need to do that and if it's worth talking to a close friend or family member about it. Thank you for the lovely comment. Hannahf Xx.

Mon, May 18th, 2020 1:18am

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