The good Padre wants me to post regularly, so I hope you don’t mind hearing those issues I’m studying. My ethics class has been focusing on lying for the past couple of weeks. I find this very interesting because, especially in the wake of our upcoming election and all that has been in the news regarding all the candidates.
According the St. Augustine, Kant, Calvinist Legalists, and Pope John Paul II, lying is wrong under any circumstance. You can’t lie no matter what.
Augustine has listed eight kinds of lies, all which are unacceptable. Better to save your soul than lie to protect someone and loose your soul. Lying is a sin no matter what. Kant believed we owe everyone the truth. This has to do with dignity and respecting others. The Pope wrote in Veritatis Splendor that the church is the pillar of truth and we are can’t alter truth as we see fit. Lying is wrong and a sin and the Bible and Church says it’s an evil. Calvinist Legalists POV also says never, never, never lie cuz it’s a sin. However, Grotius says to give people the truth that they are are due, however, in particular situations, we don’t necessarily need to reveal the truth, esp. in private affairs.
Then we have Joseph Fletcher who promotes Act Utilitarianism under a new name: Situation Ethics. Fletcher’s idea is that “1) only one thing is intrinsically good, namely love: nothing else. 2) The ultimate norm of Christian decisions is love: nothing else. 3) Love and justice are the same, for justice is love distributed. 4) Love wills the neighbor’s good whether we like him or not. 5) Only the end justifies the means: nothing else. 6) Decisions ought to be made situationally, not prescriptively.” This is from Situation Ethics a book on a debate between Fletcher and John Warwick Montgomery. Montgomery sees that if there is a choice between two evils, you chose the lesser of two evils, but you have to ask Jesus for forgiveness because lying is wrong even for good intentions.
So between Calvin legalist, Kant, Augustine and the Pope who believe no lying no way no how, you would think all the political conservatives would be truth-sayers because they are such good Christians. What do you think?