General Question

luigirovatti's avatar

Do you agree with the following quote?

Asked by luigirovatti (2579points) December 9th, 2019
32 responses
“Great Question” (3points)

“If to be truthful is to be cruel, then lying must surely be an act of kindness. And so, kindness is a lie.”

Topics: , , ,
Observing members: 0
Composing members: 0


elbanditoroso's avatar

“The truth hurts” is a long-standing statement. I can agree with that, sometimes.

I don’t buy into the rest of it. That’s more like speculation and trying to make a convincing argument where one doesn’t exist. It’s also not logical. IN fact the entire set of statements doesn’t logically hang together.

Sometime cruelty as delivered by truth is quite correct. And needed.

I would argue that lying is not kindness because lying is itself a wrong thing.

josie's avatar

No. It’s sort of a nonsense quote from a fictional character who is a loner by choice, and then is unhappy about it, and wonders why people think he’s weird.

It assumes to be truthful is cruel, but where is that proven? Even without forensic proof, it is pretty much accepted that to be truthful is to be virtuous. That’s why perjury is a crime.

It’s a non sequitur- If indeed to be truthful is to be cruel, then it does not follow that lying is an act of kindness. It could just as easily be an act of cruelty.
Thus the conclusion is not true.

So no, I don’t agree.

I like the variant better-If the truth is a cruel mistress, then a lie must be a nice girl

cookieman's avatar

No. Sounds like someone wanted to manipulate a bunch of words to make a point they had already decided upon.

kritiper's avatar

It makes it sound as though a lie doesn’t hurt so do it. Be dishonest.

stanleybmanly's avatar

It is of course dishonest, and the dishonesty is in the sneaky “if”. If you drop the “if” or substitute “since”, you quickly understand that the declaration “to be truthful is ALWAYS cruel” is assumed. Then there is the assumption that truth and kindness are apples and apples when the comparison is actually more like apples and golf balls.

Inspired_2write's avatar

”“If to be truthful is to be cruel, then lying must surely be an act of kindness.”
There are instances where the truth is best not told .
Example: If your friend had surgery to correct a defect and not all of that defect was possible to correct then one would be cruel to tell them that they look terrible.

But realizing that they cannot do another surgery and its the best that was possible, then one would surely admire the work done on them..and that is to be kind.

So it depends on the circumstances of the scenario. Not all black and white.

Response moderated (Spam)
LostInParadise's avatar

The logic is messed up. There may be cases where lying is act of kindness, but that does not mean all acts of kindness are lies.

si3tech's avatar

You never hurt someone more than when you try not to hurt them.(by NOT telling them the truth)

Zaku's avatar

It’s a witticism. It’s not even intended as a truism.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Kindness does not equal caring, it’s actually lazy. If I care about you I’ll be direct and honest and not just tell you what you want to hear.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

Depends on the situation. Lies can be kind.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Agree. The statement, as is, is flawed. It has application in some cases, but not in others.

However, to answer the question correctly, I have to say no, I do not agree with the statement. In fact, it seems to encourage people to be disingenuous. I don’t care much for disingenuous people…

Dutchess_lll's avatar

Ok. A person is dying. You are an athiest. They are holding fast to their belief in an afterlife and that they’re going to be there any time. They ask you what you think happens after death. What do you tell them?

MrGrimm888's avatar

My grandmother, to this day, thinks I’m a Baptist/Christian. Because I’ve lied to her. I’ve been agnostic, or atheist, for the last 25 years…

I even say prayers, for her sometimes. That’s not a lie, although I know I’m talking to the air. If she asks me to pray for something, I will. It is probably condescending, if there is a God. But I do pray, when she asks.
I know she’s been through a lot. And her faith, has helped keep her alive. I am damn sure, not going to fuck that up.
And so. I have lied to her, about faith, for decades. She seems happy with that. I know she would be upset, if she thought I was an atheist.

It’s a fine example of a lie, being a good thing.

MrGrimm888's avatar


LadyMarissa's avatar

I prefer someone being honest with me rather than continue to lie!!! I don’t see honesty as kindness, but more as RESPECT!!!!

A friend of mine had 2 children confront him with the truth about their lives recently. One admitted to him that she is an Atheist, the other told him that her best friend was the love of her life as she was a Lesbian. He now says that he sees them in a different light…he still LOVES both of them although he doesn’t necessarily approve of their life choices. He says that he will NEVER stop loving them & he is glad they loved him enough to be honest with him!!!

luigirovatti's avatar

@LadyMarissa: If you mean also in the case truth in cruel, then all the better.

JLeslie's avatar

The truth sometimes does hurt. Whether to lie or be truthful depends on the situation and with whom you are dealing with.

Sometimes hurtful truths are important and kind in the end. If my husband tells me something truthful that hurts a little, it might ultimately help me grow or become more self aware, and in the end it is an act of kindness and love. If his intent is to help me, then I need to believe him and take it to heart.

Withholding the truth, saying nothing, can be a lie, that also depends on the situation.

Lying and being dishonest Can be incredibly damaging. I don’t feel comfortable in relationships that I have to lie a lot.

seawulf575's avatar

It starts with a bad assumption…that truth always hurts and is cruel. If lies are told, they may initially sound kind, but as the truth comes out, the lies then become pain. Truth may be the thing that brings about the pain, but it is the lie that actually was the source.

YARNLADY's avatar

Starting with the word “If” is your first clue, to be followed by “If not, then it’s nonsense.

MrGrimm888's avatar

Good point @seawulf575 .

LadyMarissa's avatar

@luigirovatti I’ve NEVER found the truth to be cruel…sometimes it might sting a little when I first hear it.Still I’d rather hear the truth than live the lie!!!

Dutchess_lll's avatar

I have found many truths to be very cruel. Life can be cruel.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Indeed. But. Truth, can also be subjective. Telling someone my “truth,” may not be correct. It’s more like I’m being blunt. I’m a blunt person. I will tell you what I think, and there is definitely some truth there. But, it doesn’t mean that my truth, is necessarily the “truth.”

Truth, is another human construct. Perhaps derived from perspective…

Dutchess_lll's avatar

I disagree that “truth” is a human construct. “Truth” is not an emotion or an opinion or a perspective.
It can be presented as an opinion or a perspective, but that doesn’t change it.

MrGrimm888's avatar

But, it doesn’t change anything…

Trump, can say that a fact, isn’t a fact. And his base, is fine with that.

What then?...

seawulf575's avatar

@MrGrimm888 such as what? That he didn’t collude with Russia? That the media is biased? That he didn’t say Neo-Nazis were very fine people? Which “fact” that he argued against are we talking about?

MrGrimm888's avatar

^You basically reinforced my opinion. THINK….

seawulf575's avatar

^If you want to believe so. I just asked for clarification of your statement, really. And I pointed out some of what were treated as “facts” by the left were, in fact, lies. So the term “fact” is the one that needs clarification. Give some examples.

MrGrimm888's avatar

Uugh… Trump publicly asked for Russian interference.
He extorted the Ukraine, for political gain. He admitted to this.
He admitted to “grabbing pussies.”

For the life of me, I cannot understand someone with your intelligence defending Trump.

I feel like Stanley here…

Wake up brother…

WTF, is going on in your head?

Answer this question




to answer.

Mobile | Desktop

Send Feedback