The White Lie

             George Washington and the cherry tree is a famous story demonstrating how one could not tell a lie. In the year 2002 there is very little stress on honesty. It has become socially acceptable to tell a "white lie.” However, when people are asked about lying the majority would agree that it is wrong. I have conducted a series of interviews with five participants regarding lying and their opinion on it. The results of the interviews strengthened my point that people believe lying is wrong, but continue to do it regardless. Though lies are told on a daily basis it does not negate the fact that lying is wrong in our society. .

             In conducting research on lying, I wanted to interview people who I trust would answer honestly. I found myself in a predicament because (based on my experience) I find that people lie about lying. For instance, your best friend cuts her beautiful long blonde hair, and asks you if you like the new short choppy look. Deep down inside you hate it, but when asked about it you instinctively say, " I love it, it looks really cute.” The words have already been uttered out of your mouth and it's too late to take them back. Your best friend needs a little more affirmation about her new hair do, so she says, " are you lying?” Of course you're lying to her, but you reply with a "no!” This is done for two reasons: 1) So she does not feel bad or insecure about her new hair do (the hair is gone, it's not going to come back if you say you don't like the short do), and 2) You have to cover your previous lie with another affirming lie (at this point you have almost convinced yourself that you like the hair cut). This is a perfect example of a "socially acceptable” lie. So where can I find people who will answer my questions honestly about lying? I found it difficult to choose participants, but after some serious consideration I decided to ask people from my church.

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