Author Topic: Where do you draw the line on ethics  (Read 3785 times)

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #50 on: November 05, 2018, 06:45:24 PM »
^Bingo. This is not a court room where you have to tell "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Answer part of the question or an unrelated question and let the matter die. Not too difficult. If it gets to the point where your wife makes the same horrible meatloaf every Friday, ya dun goofed and have to come clean. If ya tell her, "Well babe, I dig how you put the barbecue sauce on top but to be honest I haven't like meatloaf since I was a kid," ya sent the same message as if you told her "Hon, tastes like shit," except without the asshole-ness.

Actually, I'd probably just offer to cook on Fridays.

Johnez

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #51 on: November 05, 2018, 06:50:40 PM »
LOL. Great plan....until she springs it to you on Monday with enough leftovers lunches for half the week!

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #52 on: November 06, 2018, 06:51:20 AM »
Sometimes a lie is a more private answer.  When someone asks you a question that may be a bit personal, or have a complex answer full of context that you don't feel obliged to explain.

There are few jobs that don't have some opportunity to steal or misreport something to your own benefit.  Most of us won't do it intentionally.  I've seen people fill their own fuel tanks with company gas cards, take long lunches at company expense etc.  I've also seen people get fired for forgetting to pay for a cup of coffee (!).

turketron

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #53 on: November 06, 2018, 07:06:17 AM »
I don't have much to add to this conversation, but just wanted to state that everyone here should watch The Good Place if the discussion here interests them   :D

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #54 on: November 06, 2018, 07:13:54 AM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

bluebelle

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #55 on: November 06, 2018, 08:06:06 AM »
I’m quite good at evading questions even though people think I’ve answered.

“Do you like the new neighbors?”
“They seem like they’ll really fit in here!”

Lol. So what I really said is “you people all suck” but people tend to just hear the complement and miss the message. Especially if you throw in a vague head nod. And it’s not lying! If someone calls me out then Sometimes I’ll white lie or sometimes I’ll be honest depending on the situation.

On the same note, I ran across a Lexicon of Inconspicuously Ambiguous Referrals some years back.  The author would use them when they had, for social reasons, to give a referral but were unwilling to lie to the employer or lose the friendship of the person asking for the recommendation.  Each of them has two possible meanings:

“In my opinion you would be very fortunate to get this person to work for you.”

"I most enthusiastically recommend this candidate with no qualifications whatsoever."

“All in all, I cannot say enough good things about this candidate or recommend him too highly.”

“I am pleased to say that this candidate is a former colleague of mine.”

“I can assure you that no person would be better for the job.”

“I would urge you to waste no time in making this person an offer of employment.”

I love these.....adding
"I'll give that suggestion all the consideration it deserves" when given a stupid idea

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #56 on: November 06, 2018, 08:16:24 AM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

Why would you say that you like something that you don't like? That's not remotely what Eric was suggesting.

I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #57 on: November 06, 2018, 09:59:52 AM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

Why would you say that you like something that you don't like? That's not remotely what Eric was suggesting.

I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

Eric was posing a dichotomy that didn't exist. Let's go back to his first quote. (He has moderated since then.)

To me lying is never a good thing so I just  don't accept it. Small or white lies as some people like to call them just lead to bigger lies.

"How do I look today?"

"I could never lie to you, you look like shit."

Seems like a great plan to die old and alone.

I assume Eric could have found something good in the person he was talking to if he tried and was committed to not dying old and alone. It is not a lie to filter the truth.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #58 on: November 06, 2018, 11:21:23 AM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

Why would you say that you like something that you don't like? That's not remotely what Eric was suggesting.

I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

Nope.  Fuck those people who ask how you are but don't want a response.  I give an honest response every time.  If they don't want to know how I am, they can bloody well stop asking.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #59 on: November 06, 2018, 11:32:08 AM »
To me lying is never a good thing so I just  don't accept it. Small or white lies as some people like to call them just lead to bigger lies.

"How do I look today?"

"I could never lie to you, you look like shit."

Seems like a great plan to die old and alone.

I don't lie.  Not even the fancy white kind.  If you practice telling the truth, you get good at it. You should always be able to find something positive.  If their wardrobe is a mess, maybe you can compliment them on their hair or their smile.  If you completely draw a blank, not answering the question is always an option, although there are some hoops to jump through to make it tactful!

I have some coworkers that I struggle to honestly complement.  It is worth the struggle.

My wife and children both appreciate that they can always trust me. This morning I was able to help DW feel much better about her anxiety disorder... she didn't have to second guess if I was just saying what she wanted to hear, because I don't do that.

Eric

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #60 on: November 06, 2018, 11:40:45 AM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

That's great, but doesn't seem like a tough situation to deal with at all.  Was she going to take offense and consider divorce if you didn't like some drink that was made by a bartender?  lol

I'm certainly not saying that you should default to lying.  But it's a tool in your toolbox.  Completely removing that option makes no sense to me, especially when it can come in handy during an actual tough situation to deal with.  Plus, the general idea that a white lie is always bad is just silly.  If it's the path of least resistance and you don't feel like dealing with the issue, it's certainly the best option.

Eric

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #61 on: November 06, 2018, 11:43:30 AM »
I don't lie.  Not even the fancy white kind.  If you practice telling the truth, you get good at it. You should always be able to find something positive.  If their wardrobe is a mess, maybe you can compliment them on their hair or their smile.  If you completely draw a blank, not answering the question is always an option, although there are some hoops to jump through to make it tactful!

I have some coworkers that I struggle to honestly complement.  It is worth the struggle.

Why is it worth the struggle?  Especially if it's just some random coworker.

Eric

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #62 on: November 06, 2018, 11:47:10 AM »
I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

High five!  I was specifically asked at work why I wasn't riding my bike last week.  Instead of telling the truth about something that was none of their business, I lied and said that I was "nursing an injury, but will be back to riding soon".  Which of course led to no further questions or comments as expected.  The perfect outcome.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #63 on: November 06, 2018, 12:31:57 PM »
I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

High five!  I was specifically asked at work why I wasn't riding my bike last week.  Instead of telling the truth about something that was none of their business, I lied and said that I was "nursing an injury, but will be back to riding soon".  Which of course led to no further questions or comments as expected.  The perfect outcome.

The problem with lying, in my opinion, is that you become an untrustworthy person. Sooner or later, as the lies add up, some start slipping through the cracks. Then people start to think, if he can lie about something as stupid as why he didn't ride his bike, what else is he capable of lying of?

And are you telling me there isn't a quick and easy truthful response to why you didn't ride your bike? "I didn't feel like it" usually suffices. You're implying your lie was the only option for the desired outcome, which in and of itself is probably not the truth.

I don't necessarily disagree with the white lie in theory. I use it every Christmas and Easter. I used it when my young kids asked me where babies come from. ("From a mommy's belly." "My friends told me it comes from a girl's private parts." "Umm.... No, no, definitely the belly.") I just try to use it extremely sparingly, so that when people hear the words coming out of my mouth the first thing they don't think is whether or not I am telling the truth.

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #64 on: November 06, 2018, 12:47:21 PM »
One can constructively criticize without lying. If your meal is bad, instead of saying "This tastes like shit", try "It's not one of my favorites. X was dry./It could really use some spices./I'm not a fan of the burnt taste./etc." Most people a) know when something is subpar and b) like some honest feedback (when requested), and, on the other side of the conversation, c) have learned in life how to use a little tact.

The best way to "use a little tact" is to lie.  Everyone is happier that way, as it's a lot easier on both parties.  Remember, this is a meal that you hated.  Hated!  (not my choice of word, btw)  You literally can't tell someone the "honest truth" without hurting them if you hate it.  At best, you're going with a partial truth, which could be described as lying by omission. 

Whereas you can easily reduce the impact with a small lie.  That doesn't preclude constructive feedback.  You don't have to tell someone you love it when you hate it.  But it gives you the option to say that you don't hate it, which is generally a much better way to give feedback.  Look up the Shit Sandwich art of giving criticism.

My wife loves chavelas. To me they taste wretched, and I can't understand how someone can destroy a good beer like that. The first couple times she offered me one, I tasted it, gave it back to her, and told her I'm not a fan. She thinks I'm weird for it and vice versa, but going to the bar is now easy because she never has to worry about me trying to steal her drink. No lying was necessary, and no awkwardness down the line when she orders me a chavela because I said I liked it.

Why would you say that you like something that you don't like? That's not remotely what Eric was suggesting.

I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

Nope.  Fuck those people who ask how you are but don't want a response.  I give an honest response every time.  If they don't want to know how I am, they can bloody well stop asking.

If I got pissed at all the people who say "How are you" but don't actually care how I am, I'd have no anger left to direct at our historically inept and offensive political leaders. Gotta pick my battles.

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #65 on: November 06, 2018, 12:54:44 PM »
I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

High five!  I was specifically asked at work why I wasn't riding my bike last week.  Instead of telling the truth about something that was none of their business, I lied and said that I was "nursing an injury, but will be back to riding soon".  Which of course led to no further questions or comments as expected.  The perfect outcome.

The problem with lying, in my opinion, is that you become an untrustworthy person. Sooner or later, as the lies add up, some start slipping through the cracks. Then people start to think, if he can lie about something as stupid as why he didn't ride his bike, what else is he capable of lying of?

And are you telling me there isn't a quick and easy truthful response to why you didn't ride your bike? "I didn't feel like it" usually suffices. You're implying your lie was the only option for the desired outcome, which in and of itself is probably not the truth.

I don't necessarily disagree with the white lie in theory. I use it every Christmas and Easter. I used it when my young kids asked me where babies come from. ("From a mommy's belly." "My friends told me it comes from a girl's private parts." "Umm.... No, no, definitely the belly.") I just try to use it extremely sparingly, so that when people hear the words coming out of my mouth the first thing they don't think is whether or not I am telling the truth.

I feel like I have a pretty good handle on the kind of lie that would cause people to question my integrity vs. the kind that I tell every day as a normal, functioning member of society. If you are the type of person who would get offended if I wasn't straightforward about the reason my balls are sore (which is none of your damn business), then I'm pretty sure I know which of the two of us is more likely to be treated suspiciously by our common acquaintances.

Eric

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #66 on: November 06, 2018, 01:07:33 PM »
I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

High five!  I was specifically asked at work why I wasn't riding my bike last week.  Instead of telling the truth about something that was none of their business, I lied and said that I was "nursing an injury, but will be back to riding soon".  Which of course led to no further questions or comments as expected.  The perfect outcome.

The problem with lying, in my opinion, is that you become an untrustworthy person. Sooner or later, as the lies add up, some start slipping through the cracks. Then people start to think, if he can lie about something as stupid as why he didn't ride his bike, what else is he capable of lying of?

And are you telling me there isn't a quick and easy truthful response to why you didn't ride your bike? "I didn't feel like it" usually suffices. You're implying your lie was the only option for the desired outcome, which in and of itself is probably not the truth.

Come on now, this is getting ridiculous.  I'm not on trial.  I'm not being interviewed by the FBI.  There is no "tangled web of lies" to remember.  It's a simple dismissal of a trivial situation in which no one is hurt.  It's the path of least resistance.  I'm not any more or less trustworthy than before I had the vasectomy.

I don't necessarily disagree with the white lie in theory. I use it every Christmas and Easter. I used it when my young kids asked me where babies come from. ("From a mommy's belly." "My friends told me it comes from a girl's private parts." "Umm.... No, no, definitely the belly.") I just try to use it extremely sparingly, so that when people hear the words coming out of my mouth the first thing they don't think is whether or not I am telling the truth.

Oh, so you're also an untrustworthy person!  Well, well, well, how the turntables!  How will you ever remember the truth if you start lying to anyone about where babies come from or if there's really a Santa Claus?  It's a SLIPPERY SLOPE to becoming completely untrustworthy!!!!1111  LOL
« Last Edit: November 06, 2018, 01:09:04 PM by Eric »

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #67 on: November 06, 2018, 01:10:06 PM »
These ethics threads pop up with some regularity. I always question their utility simply because the unethical people will never respond. Posters are always people who “consider themselves to be highly ethical” and it takes no time at all for the discussion to devolve into nitpicking over white lies and copyright infringement. The board member who’s cruising to FI by committing elder abuse, falsifying time cards or reselling misplaced inventory isn’t rushing to admit it on a public forum.

Anyway, no shade on those who are participating, just an observation that OP is not likely to get the full diversity of opinion on this topic.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #68 on: November 06, 2018, 04:36:36 PM »
I tell white lies to people all the time. It's part of being a normal part of society. When a casual acquaintance asks me, "Hey, how are you?" I don't spill my guts about my two-month old keeping me up half the night, or the fact that my balls are sore because I just had a vasectomy. I just say "Good, how are you?" Because I know from experience and observation that they're just following polite social protocols and not genuinely interested in how my day is going. If a close friend or a family member asks me the same question, I'll likely respond with an honest assessment of my day, because I know that they actually care.

High five!  I was specifically asked at work why I wasn't riding my bike last week.  Instead of telling the truth about something that was none of their business, I lied and said that I was "nursing an injury, but will be back to riding soon".  Which of course led to no further questions or comments as expected.  The perfect outcome.

The problem with lying, in my opinion, is that you become an untrustworthy person. Sooner or later, as the lies add up, some start slipping through the cracks. Then people start to think, if he can lie about something as stupid as why he didn't ride his bike, what else is he capable of lying of?

And are you telling me there isn't a quick and easy truthful response to why you didn't ride your bike? "I didn't feel like it" usually suffices. You're implying your lie was the only option for the desired outcome, which in and of itself is probably not the truth.

Come on now, this is getting ridiculous.  I'm not on trial.  I'm not being interviewed by the FBI.  There is no "tangled web of lies" to remember.  It's a simple dismissal of a trivial situation in which no one is hurt.  It's the path of least resistance.  I'm not any more or less trustworthy than before I had the vasectomy.

I don't necessarily disagree with the white lie in theory. I use it every Christmas and Easter. I used it when my young kids asked me where babies come from. ("From a mommy's belly." "My friends told me it comes from a girl's private parts." "Umm.... No, no, definitely the belly.") I just try to use it extremely sparingly, so that when people hear the words coming out of my mouth the first thing they don't think is whether or not I am telling the truth.

Oh, so you're also an untrustworthy person!  Well, well, well, how the turntables!  How will you ever remember the truth if you start lying to anyone about where babies come from or if there's really a Santa Claus?  It's a SLIPPERY SLOPE to becoming completely untrustworthy!!!!1111  LOL

Yep, I am guilty. How many people do you know have been fired for lying on their job application? Over smoking pot a few times in college? Because their recruiter told them to lie about it? Do you know how difficult that is to explain when trying to get a new job? Or I guess one could just lie again.

I'm not equating a white lie to a lie on an application, but I am saying that lying sometimes has consequences (unless you're a supreme court nominee).

By the way, sympathies on the scrotal pain. A worthy Mustachian excuse for not riding the bike.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #69 on: November 08, 2018, 11:01:32 AM »
Yep, I am guilty. How many people do you know have been fired for lying on their job application? Over smoking pot a few times in college?

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.

But again, there's a massive rift between lying on your job application and telling your kids that Santa brings them presents at Christmas. The stakes are much higher. I don't lie to avoid trouble or to get things that aren't rightfully mine. I do lie to my kids about Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. I do lie to people occasionally when they expect a brief, canned response for polite social interactions. I don't lie to my wife about where I've been. I don't lie to my boss about how far along I am on a given project. It just seems ridiculous to suggest that complete honesty, all the time, is somehow a more ethical state of being.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #70 on: November 08, 2018, 11:06:35 AM »

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.


This is why I took that off my resume recently! I was like, if someone actually wanted to speak with me in an interview I'd be doomed.

Never meant to lie, just have lost some of the skill over time and forgot to take it off.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #71 on: November 08, 2018, 11:14:50 AM »

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.


This is why I took that off my resume recently! I was like, if someone actually wanted to speak with me in an interview I'd be doomed.

Never meant to lie, just have lost some of the skill over time and forgot to take it off.

I'm conversational in Portuguese, but I've never been bold enough to put it on my resume. That's a risky maneuver unless you're pretty confident in your abilities. It's come up in my interviews, given that my resume lists research projects in Brazil, but I'm always careful to be clear about my limitations.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #72 on: November 08, 2018, 11:17:50 AM »
I do lie to people occasionally when they expect a brief, canned response for polite social interactions.

The only thing I'm saying is I don't know when I've ever been in a situation where a canned lie was needed when some variant of the truth wouldn't fit the bill.
"How are you doing?"
"Good, thanks, and you."
"Fine."
Even if both of these people feel like shit for whatever reason, I don't look at this as a lie. There are very few times where I feel bad about everything going on in my life. What this type of conversation works really well for is the rare situations in which someone feels like shit and really wants to talk about it, or someone feels great and really wants to talk about it. 99% of the time people aren't expecting stream-of-conscience honesty out of this question.

shenlong55

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #73 on: November 08, 2018, 11:23:02 AM »
Yep, I am guilty. How many people do you know have been fired for lying on their job application? Over smoking pot a few times in college?

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.

But again, there's a massive rift between lying on your job application and telling your kids that Santa brings them presents at Christmas. The stakes are much higher. I don't lie to avoid trouble or to get things that aren't rightfully mine. I do lie to my kids about Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. I do lie to people occasionally when they expect a brief, canned response for polite social interactions. I don't lie to my wife about where I've been. I don't lie to my boss about how far along I am on a given project. It just seems ridiculous to suggest that complete honesty, all the time, is somehow a more ethical state of being.

I'm not sure that I would consider these things lies...  The Santa, Easter Bunny Tooth Fairy stuff is debatable depending on how you speak to your kids about them I think.  But I don't think responding to the actual message being communicated by another person rather than the literal message coming out of their mouth is lying.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #74 on: November 08, 2018, 11:54:31 AM »
Yep, I am guilty. How many people do you know have been fired for lying on their job application? Over smoking pot a few times in college?

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.

But again, there's a massive rift between lying on your job application and telling your kids that Santa brings them presents at Christmas. The stakes are much higher. I don't lie to avoid trouble or to get things that aren't rightfully mine. I do lie to my kids about Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. I do lie to people occasionally when they expect a brief, canned response for polite social interactions. I don't lie to my wife about where I've been. I don't lie to my boss about how far along I am on a given project. It just seems ridiculous to suggest that complete honesty, all the time, is somehow a more ethical state of being.

Why lie to your kids about Santa?  My kid (four and a half) asked me the other day if the tooth-fairy was real.  I said 'No, but the money you get under your pillow is!'.  End of story, no big upset, no total loss of innocence . . . and later on, no moment where my kid feels like he can't trust me after the truth about the tooth fairy is revealed.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #75 on: November 08, 2018, 12:11:13 PM »
Yep, I am guilty. How many people do you know have been fired for lying on their job application? Over smoking pot a few times in college?

Personally? None. I do know people who have not been hired for lying on their job applications. Fun story: My boss once interviewed applicants for an internship, one of whom claimed to be "fluent in Spanish" on his application. My boss studied in Uruguay and regularly travels to Central and South America so he opened the interview with a question in Spanish. The applicant froze, then admitted that he had travelled to Mexico once with his family, but was not conversational in Spanish. My boss advised him to never lie on a job application again and ended the interview.

But again, there's a massive rift between lying on your job application and telling your kids that Santa brings them presents at Christmas. The stakes are much higher. I don't lie to avoid trouble or to get things that aren't rightfully mine. I do lie to my kids about Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. I do lie to people occasionally when they expect a brief, canned response for polite social interactions. I don't lie to my wife about where I've been. I don't lie to my boss about how far along I am on a given project. It just seems ridiculous to suggest that complete honesty, all the time, is somehow a more ethical state of being.

Why lie to your kids about Santa?  My kid (four and a half) asked me the other day if the tooth-fairy was real.  I said 'No, but the money you get under your pillow is!'.  End of story, no big upset, no total loss of innocence . . . and later on, no moment where my kid feels like he can't trust me after the truth about the tooth fairy is revealed.

I've contemplated this a lot. I don't particularly like lying to the kids. But ultimately, it may be a good thing that kids at some point learn you can't trust everything you hear, even if it is coming from every adult including your parents. But on the other hand, maybe it is giving the impression it's ok to lie? A real moral quandary, that Santa Claus.

PoutineLover

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #76 on: November 08, 2018, 12:14:12 PM »
This thread is interesting, these are my thoughts on some of the examples that have come up.
I think the question "how are you" is meant to lubricate social interactions, and not be an opening to tell someone the story of your life. I think good, busy, not too bad, how about you, are all normal responses and don't need to be analyzed or considered lies. But if your spouse or family asks you because they truly want to know, going into depth is appropriate.
I don't really see the point of lying to someone about how they look, you aren't doing them any favours and usually if I ask that question I would like an honest (but tactful) response. But don't ask the question if you can't accept the truth. Also, don't make insincere compliments, if you have nothing nice to say, just don't say anything.
Breaking the law and stealing are usually unethical, but accidentally swiping a pen isn't really stealing. It would only cross a line if you regularly and purposely did it so that you'd never have to buy your own pens or something.
And breaking the law is not necessarily unethical, if the law itself is immoral. If there's a law against homosexuality, it's not unethical to get married as a gay person, but the law itself is what needs changing. If it's illegal to protest, but injustice is occurring, it's practically your duty to protest it.
To me, the line on ethics is where the action crosses from harmless to harmful, and from inconsequential to consequential. Lying to your kids about Santa Claus is pretty harmless and inconsequential, up to a certain point, but I'd never bother to lie once they started to figure it out and question it. Lying on a job application is definitely consequential and therefore unethical.
I'm a bit torn on music or movie downloads, cause on the one hand the artists aren't getting paid, but I only feel bad for small time artists, not people who get paid millions. And most of the time, it's not depriving them of a sale, if I can't download it I just won't watch it, I wouldn't have bought it anyway. Maybe I am a bit unethical on that point, but I consider it fairly inconsequential and not that harmful so it doesn't cross my personal line.
Finally, credit card bonuses exist to be used, and if they didn't want you to have them they wouldn't offer them. For credit card companies I'm probably the worst customer, I never pay interest and I usually just fulfill the minimum conditions to get the bonus. But it's not my fault if they lose money on it, I never lie to get a card and I think they weigh the cost of people like me against the real clients they expect to get and consider it the cost of doing business or the cost of customer acquisition.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #77 on: November 08, 2018, 12:33:50 PM »
Lying to your kids about Santa Claus is pretty harmless and inconsequential, up to a certain point, but I'd never bother to lie once they started to figure it out and question it.

I'm gonna keep that lie all the way to my grave. If they get testy over it, I'll continue saying it's the truth, but add that you don't always have to believe what people tell you.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #78 on: November 08, 2018, 01:07:19 PM »
Lying to your kids about Santa Claus is pretty harmless and inconsequential, up to a certain point, but I'd never bother to lie once they started to figure it out and question it.

I'm gonna keep that lie all the way to my grave. If they get testy over it, I'll continue saying it's the truth, but add that you don't always have to believe what people tell you.

My parents played up the Santa Clause story until we were in college. They knew good and well we didn't believe by the time we were 7 or 8, and we knew good and well that they knew we didn't believe. It's harmless fun, and I never considered my parents to be dishonest.


Why lie to your kids about Santa?  My kid (four and a half) asked me the other day if the tooth-fairy was real.  I said 'No, but the money you get under your pillow is!'.  End of story, no big upset, no total loss of innocence . . . and later on, no moment where my kid feels like he can't trust me after the truth about the tooth fairy is revealed.

Because all the parents at your kids' school who want to pass down a centuries-old tradition to their children will be pissed at you when your kids spills the beans to all their classmates? Seriously, I don't care what you tell your kids, and I don't care if your kids tell my kids that Santa ain't real. But I've known some parents to get really touchy about that shit.

Honestly, though - I enjoyed the mythology as a kid, and I'd like for my kids to enjoy it as well. I don't think it teaches kids that their parents are untrustworthy - but maybe it'll teach them not to believe in every mythical being that sincere-sounding people try to convince them is real.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #79 on: November 08, 2018, 01:27:12 PM »
Lying to your kids about Santa Claus is pretty harmless and inconsequential, up to a certain point, but I'd never bother to lie once they started to figure it out and question it.

I'm gonna keep that lie all the way to my grave. If they get testy over it, I'll continue saying it's the truth, but add that you don't always have to believe what people tell you.

My parents played up the Santa Clause story until we were in college. They knew good and well we didn't believe by the time we were 7 or 8, and we knew good and well that they knew we didn't believe. It's harmless fun, and I never considered my parents to be dishonest.


Why lie to your kids about Santa?  My kid (four and a half) asked me the other day if the tooth-fairy was real.  I said 'No, but the money you get under your pillow is!'.  End of story, no big upset, no total loss of innocence . . . and later on, no moment where my kid feels like he can't trust me after the truth about the tooth fairy is revealed.

Because all the parents at your kids' school who want to pass down a centuries-old tradition to their children will be pissed at you when your kids spills the beans to all their classmates? Seriously, I don't care what you tell your kids, and I don't care if your kids tell my kids that Santa ain't real. But I've known some parents to get really touchy about that shit.

Honestly, though - I enjoyed the mythology as a kid, and I'd like for my kids to enjoy it as well. I don't think it teaches kids that their parents are untrustworthy - but maybe it'll teach them not to believe in every mythical being that sincere-sounding people try to convince them is real.

Lying about Santa is a weird thing that parents do for their own personal enjoyment.  It doesn't help a kid in any way.  Christmas isn't about Santa, it's about embracing materialism, gluttony, randomly killing a tree (because fuck conifers!), wasting energy on coloured lights, learning to hate your close family due to painfully long trips in the car through horrific traffic in the heavy snow, visiting your extended family to remember why you don't do so very often, and hard drinking to make it through the one church service every year Grandma has deemed is mandatory (and no, your gay cousin is not invited).  :P

Don't get me wrong, I like Santa as much as the next person and will continue to give gifts from "Santa" and read stories about him with my Son.  To me, that's carrying on the centuries (well, one century anyway) long tradition and it makes my kid happy.  If my son is old enough to question if Santa's real though, he's old enough to know the truth.  If someone wants to get angry because I'm not lying to my kid who isn't then lying to his friends . . . well, I'm not even sure how to approach that scenario . . . but it's likely going to involve some sarcasm.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #80 on: November 08, 2018, 01:37:34 PM »
My mom answered the question "Is Santa real?" with "Yes, he is magic pretend." She also made it clear that Santa wouldn't bring things for people who persisted in challenging the myth.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #81 on: November 08, 2018, 02:29:55 PM »
Let's take this one step (controversially) further. What is your response if the kids ask if God's real? (This question does not apply to the religious.)

Here's another one where I lie. Is it unethical? I really don't know the answer.

shenlong55

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #82 on: November 08, 2018, 02:36:14 PM »
Lying to your kids about Santa Claus is pretty harmless and inconsequential, up to a certain point, but I'd never bother to lie once they started to figure it out and question it.

I'm gonna keep that lie all the way to my grave. If they get testy over it, I'll continue saying it's the truth, but add that you don't always have to believe what people tell you.

My parents played up the Santa Clause story until we were in college. They knew good and well we didn't believe by the time we were 7 or 8, and we knew good and well that they knew we didn't believe. It's harmless fun, and I never considered my parents to be dishonest.


Why lie to your kids about Santa?  My kid (four and a half) asked me the other day if the tooth-fairy was real.  I said 'No, but the money you get under your pillow is!'.  End of story, no big upset, no total loss of innocence . . . and later on, no moment where my kid feels like he can't trust me after the truth about the tooth fairy is revealed.

Because all the parents at your kids' school who want to pass down a centuries-old tradition to their children will be pissed at you when your kids spills the beans to all their classmates? Seriously, I don't care what you tell your kids, and I don't care if your kids tell my kids that Santa ain't real. But I've known some parents to get really touchy about that shit.

Honestly, though - I enjoyed the mythology as a kid, and I'd like for my kids to enjoy it as well. I don't think it teaches kids that their parents are untrustworthy - but maybe it'll teach them not to believe in every mythical being that sincere-sounding people try to convince them is real.

Lying about Santa is a weird thing that parents do for their own personal enjoyment.  It doesn't help a kid in any way.  Christmas isn't about Santa, it's about embracing materialism, gluttony, randomly killing a tree (because fuck conifers!), wasting energy on coloured lights, learning to hate your close family due to painfully long trips in the car through horrific traffic in the heavy snow, visiting your extended family to remember why you don't do so very often, and hard drinking to make it through the one church service every year Grandma has deemed is mandatory (and no, your gay cousin is not invited).  :P

Don't get me wrong, I like Santa as much as the next person and will continue to give gifts from "Santa" and read stories about him with my Son.  To me, that's carrying on the centuries (well, one century anyway) long tradition and it makes my kid happy.  If my son is old enough to question if Santa's real though, he's old enough to know the truth.  If someone wants to get angry because I'm not lying to my kid who isn't then lying to his friends . . . well, I'm not even sure how to approach that scenario . . . but it's likely going to involve some sarcasm.

If your son is old enough to question Santa then he's probably old enough to understand that it's not always necessary or helpful to proactively correct others' false beliefs.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #83 on: November 08, 2018, 05:03:19 PM »
Absolutely!  Given the prevalence of competing and contradictory religious beliefs in the world, it's probably a good idea to get kids used to stepping lightly around false belief that elicit strong emotion.

(FTR, I did make it a point to tell my son that not all of his friends know about the tooth fairy, and that it might make them sad or upset if he told them.)


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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #84 on: November 08, 2018, 05:49:42 PM »
Let's take this one step (controversially) further. What is your response if the kids ask if God's real? (This question does not apply to the religious.)

Here's another one where I lie. Is it unethical? I really don't know the answer.
I was raised religious, but no longer am, and never truly believed in God. I would never lie to my kids and say God is real, but I would tell them what the stories are and why some people believe in God, and how there's a huge diversity of religions out there with different gods they can learn about. It's more important to me that they learn to question and develop their ability to research and investigate claims, and I'm not going to muddy the waters by teaching them to believe in a god with no evidence.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #85 on: November 08, 2018, 08:41:53 PM »
Let's take this one step (controversially) further. What is your response if the kids ask if God's real? (This question does not apply to the religious.)

Here's another one where I lie. Is it unethical? I really don't know the answer.
I was raised religious, but no longer am, and never truly believed in God. I would never lie to my kids and say God is real, but I would tell them what the stories are and why some people believe in God, and how there's a huge diversity of religions out there with different gods they can learn about. It's more important to me that they learn to question and develop their ability to research and investigate claims, and I'm not going to muddy the waters by teaching them to believe in a god with no evidence.

Yeah, at one point when the kids were younger I was able to talk around it. Eventually, they started asking me very directly. I cracked. I also grew up in a religious household, so I didn't want any awkwardness when the parents were visiting and praying at the table or what have you.

PoutineLover

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #86 on: November 08, 2018, 08:50:10 PM »
Let's take this one step (controversially) further. What is your response if the kids ask if God's real? (This question does not apply to the religious.)

Here's another one where I lie. Is it unethical? I really don't know the answer.
I was raised religious, but no longer am, and never truly believed in God. I would never lie to my kids and say God is real, but I would tell them what the stories are and why some people believe in God, and how there's a huge diversity of religions out there with different gods they can learn about. It's more important to me that they learn to question and develop their ability to research and investigate claims, and I'm not going to muddy the waters by teaching them to believe in a god with no evidence.

Yeah, at one point when the kids were younger I was able to talk around it. Eventually, they started asking me very directly. I cracked. I also grew up in a religious household, so I didn't want any awkwardness when the parents were visiting and praying at the table or what have you.
It would still be important to me to teach them to respect the religious traditions of others, and bow their heads if someone was praying at the table. Many people including my grandma got a lot out of religion including a sense of purpose and comfort and a supportive community. Everyone needs a source of that, it just doesn't necessarily have to be religious. No one should be a dick about something that means a lot to someone, as long as they aren't trying to force those beliefs on others.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #87 on: November 09, 2018, 07:12:50 AM »
It would still be important to me to teach them to respect the religious traditions of others, and bow their heads if someone was praying at the table. Many people including my grandma got a lot out of religion including a sense of purpose and comfort and a supportive community. Everyone needs a source of that, it just doesn't necessarily have to be religious. No one should be a dick about something that means a lot to someone, as long as they aren't trying to force those beliefs on others.

I totally understand (and generally agree with) what you're saying here, but feel the need to point out something that's kinda hypocritical.  Telling someone who strongly doesn't believe in existence of God to bow their head in deference to Him during grace is being a dick about something that means a lot to someone, and is forcing belief in God on others.  A religious person offering praise to a God that someone at the table doesn't believe in, is no different than an atheist offering thanks for the lack of God in his life at a table with a very religious person.  Both are kinda being a dick about something that means a lot to someone, and are attempting to force those beliefs on others.  Only the atheist will catch shit for doing so though, so we need to be very clear in the actual advice we're giving here:

Atheism is not to be taken as seriously as belief in God, and special accommodations should only be made for those who believe in God.  Overtly forcing others to take part in minor religious ceremony is OK, and expected.

PoutineLover

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #88 on: November 09, 2018, 07:28:10 AM »
@GuitarStv I guess to me when people are praying at the table it would be rude to text or talk or whatever, so I guess just bow head and wait for it to finish is the least disruptive way of dealing, even if you don't agree with the prayer being said. There's a difference between choosing to cooperate and being forced to, so I don't think anyone should be forced to do anything they aren't comfortable with. I would do the equivalent for any religion, and have participated in different meals that include religious traditions. I consider it bonding with the people having the meal more than a specifically religious gesture.
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way, but to me atheism is more of a lack of religious traditions, so it's hard to think of an equivalent situation.
However when it comes to governance and things that are official functions that happen to contain religious prayers, I think it's fine to challenge those, because there's no place for religion in a secular society, and one religion definitely shouldn't take precedence over the rest.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #89 on: November 09, 2018, 07:35:58 AM »
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.

PoutineLover

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #90 on: November 09, 2018, 07:46:20 AM »
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.
I do see your point, but I guess I'm coming at it from a perspective of having grown up near religion but not believing in it, and not wanting to rock the boat. My lack of religious belief is basically a non issue to me except when I directly encounter religion, so in those situations I just stay quiet and respect their tradition. I'm not going to convince them not to believe just like they won't convince me to believe.
I guess if I really think about it, there are probably people who say grace at their own table, but don't impose that when they're eating at their friend's house. So maybe the compromise is that whoever is offering the meal gets to say grace or not, but if you're religious and you're eating at an atheist's house, you don't impose grace on them. 

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #91 on: November 09, 2018, 07:54:53 AM »
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.

I consider myself agnostic, not atheist, but I have no problem with saying a prayer or bowing for a prayer. I'm not disrespected in the least when people pray around me. When I pray, I don't pray for intercession from a deity, but I do find value in being humble and articulating thankfulness. But whatever. You can be offended by prayer if you wish.

Boofinator

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #92 on: November 09, 2018, 07:55:59 AM »
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.

I don't mind bowing my head and praying occasionally, because I am truly thankful for life, food, health, etc. Meditating on that is healthy, so I do not feel too offended when praying (for the right purposes; can't stand when people pray to win before a sporting event or election).

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #93 on: November 09, 2018, 08:15:20 AM »
I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.

I consider myself agnostic, not atheist, but I have no problem with saying a prayer or bowing for a prayer. I'm not disrespected in the least when people pray around me. When I pray, I don't pray for intercession from a deity, but I do find value in being humble and articulating thankfulness. But whatever. You can be offended by prayer if you wish.

I'm not personally offended by prayer at all but like you, I'm not an atheist.


I also think religious people should respect atheists in the same way

This is really the crux of the issue.  A religious person respecting an atheist wouldn't say grace.  An atheist respecting a religious person would bow their head while grace is said.  If you have these two disparate groups eating at the same table, someone will not be respected . . . and in my experience this is always the atheist.

I don't have a solution for the problem and would encourage someone who doesn't believe in God to bow their head and stay quiet . . . but it's a pretty obvious double standard, and it's evident how this might be grating/frustrating for the person who doesn't believe in religion to constantly be forced to pay respects to other people's beliefs - other people who refuse to respect his own.

I don't mind bowing my head and praying occasionally, because I am truly thankful for life, food, health, etc. Meditating on that is healthy, so I do not feel too offended when praying (for the right purposes; can't stand when people pray to win before a sporting event or election).

As mentioned, this isn't something that personally offends me . . . but common advice is to let the religious celebrate their religion in the name of respect (indeed, this is the advice I give my son).  This respect doesn't usually extend to those who are uncomfortable with the celebration of religion though, which is weird.

Agreed, meditating is healthy and there's nothing offensive about giving thanks.  If a grace doesn't mention a deity and simply discusses thankfulness, that would should be acceptable and inoffensive to anyone.  I've rarely heard a grace said before a meal that didn't directly mention a God or blessings from a God though.

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #94 on: November 09, 2018, 08:45:09 AM »
I aspire to follow Brad Blanton's "Radical Honesty" method. (www.radicalhonesty.com).  In my consensual relationships where I am free to end the relationship at any time (family, friends, employer), I have a duty to be honest and transparent.

In non-consensual relationships that I did not choose and from which I cannot decide to remove myself (government officials and their laws, soldiers at the door, a mugger with his gun in my ribs), I owe no duty to be honest. In fact, it is my duty to subvert them whenever possible.

This makes a lot of sense to me.


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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #95 on: November 09, 2018, 08:48:34 AM »
Absolutely!  Given the prevalence of competing and contradictory religious beliefs in the world, it's probably a good idea to get kids used to stepping lightly around false belief that elicit strong emotion.

(FTR, I did make it a point to tell my son that not all of his friends know about the tooth fairy, and that it might make them sad or upset if he told them.)

Great approach! I'll have to keep that in my old brain till my son reaches the age of questioning.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #96 on: November 09, 2018, 09:11:01 AM »
In non-consensual relationships that I did not choose and from which I cannot decide to remove myself (government officials and their laws... In fact, it is my duty to subvert them whenever possible.

This makes a lot of sense to me.

If you live in a democracy, government officials and their laws are chosen by you.  There are many ways that you can decide to remove yourself from their control . . . leaving the country, running for office or becoming politically active to change the system, etc.  Actively attempting to subvert the laws of the land wherever possible is actively working against the will of your countrymen, and a betrayal of your country.

rocketpj

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #97 on: November 09, 2018, 10:38:45 AM »
Let's take this one step (controversially) further. What is your response if the kids ask if God's real? (This question does not apply to the religious.)

Here's another one where I lie. Is it unethical? I really don't know the answer.

I tell them the truth, which is that I have no idea.  It's up to them to figure out what they think about stuff like that.  I will offer my opinions, but no prescriptions because I have no direct knowledge of any gods or other deities.

robartsd

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #98 on: November 09, 2018, 11:37:47 AM »
As a religious person, it isn't offensive to me if a host does not offer grace at a meal. I am free to silently offer grace for myself before partaking without involving others (of course other religious traditions may not be as flexible).  I am also not offended by hosts voicing a prayer in a religious tradition that does not match mine.

can't stand when people pray to win before a sporting event or election).
I agree that praying that your side wins isn't really appropriate; but praying to do your best, to be safe, to make wise choices, or that others might make wise choices might be.

GuitarStv

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Re: Where do you draw the line on ethics
« Reply #99 on: November 09, 2018, 12:08:43 PM »
can't stand when people pray to win before a sporting event or election).
I agree that praying that your side wins isn't really appropriate; but praying to do your best, to be safe, to make wise choices, or that others might make wise choices might be.

Mark Twain wrote a great short story about that . . .  https://warprayer.org/.