Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Honesty the Best Policy?

I think I have been infested by trypanosomas. And I am having trypanosomiasis. The weird thing is that I have never been to Africa. Yes, I am having some sort of African sleeping sickness; or more like the Malaysian sleeping sickness in this case.

I was taking a look into my Financial Management subject not a few hours ago, trying to load some financial jargons into my poor scientific brain. I did not get further than the second paragraph of the first chapter when the words start to wobble and fade. Soon enough, I nodded away on the sofa with the book still on my lap. Maybe it was me or maybe it was just the subject that is causing me this sickness. I fell asleep in the class yesterday during lecture and woke up in panic when the lecturer threw me a question which I blindly answered, almost half-whispering, while trying my best not to look like I have slept off the entire period.

Anyway, that's not the point. I now have the intention of studying Business Ethics and Law but before I start boring myself with the book, I decided to take a detour into blogging. So, let's talk about honesty.

Would you tell someone the truth if you know that the truth will hurt that someone? We have been taught since young that honesty is never the bad policy, but is this true, really? I came across a quote by Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and the City (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) not too long ago. It says...

"I started thinking about honesty. Maybe the idea was overrated. Maybe coming clean is the ultimate selfish act, a way to absolve yourself by hurting someone who doesn’t deserve to be hurt. I cheated on a test in the fifth grade with two friends. They confessed and failed the class. I never told anyone, and it never mattered."

And upon digesting those words, I realized that there are so much truth in it. That honesty, isn't necessarily the best policy. Especially not when you know that what you are about to tell will hurt the other party like hell or will bother them so much that they couldn't think of anything else for the next one month except that hurtful truth you chose to let her/him know.

Take for instance, a girl asking her boyfriend if she looks fat in a particular dress. Now, to say that she actually looks fat in everything and nothing would be harsh even though that is actually the truth. But telling her so would probably make her go hysterical and that is definitely not an outcome any men would ever want. So he would politely say no and save the girl from being hurt and him from being the victim of something he shouldn't have said. He was being ethical and unselfish.

Let's take in another scenario when a relationship has turned so routine that one decided to jump it. Now, he knows that that would hurt the partner extremely bad, but for him to live on with lies are just something he won't want to do for the rest of his life. Plus, of course, the fact that he already has someone else tickling his fancies on the side provides another strong reason why he doesn't want to be in such monotonous relationship any longer. So, being the selfish bastard, he told the truth to his partner...

'Baby, I don't think we can go on like this any further. I don't think we have it anymore. I don't love you as much and even if we try, I doubt it will get any better. Look, I know the truth hurts, but I am just being honest. I don't want to fool you into believing that I love you when I am actually in love with someone else.'

Now, please tell me, which part of the above speech depicts a good policy? He was obviously being selfish and just by telling the truth does not give him any plus point. He shouldn't hide behind the honesty policy, pretending like he's not purposely being a bastard. He might as well says...

'Hey, I am one sick bastard who gets tired of the same old pussy.(Excuse my language, but I am trying to make a point) Therefore, I'm leaving for a fresh one, 'nuff said.'

The way I see it, at times, there may be no good in always telling the truth, let alone to describe that honesty is always the best policy because it may not always be. One should always consider if the positive outcome of being honest outweighs the negative. And if the negative outweighs the positive, and if one can still pull the non-selfish act, it will be wiser to just shut up. Because what they don't know can never hurt them.

Cartoon #5601

So okay. I am going back to books. Umm... or maybe not. The sleeping sickness is kicking in again. I think I'll pass the books and go to sleep. (Grin!)

35 comments:

ainnie ahmad said...

I as a person wud appreciate honesty cos usually others lying to me will eventually get caught and then the hurt wud be much much worst than if the truth has been revealed... this ofcourse is an exception if the lies told will never be unfold... then yes, i'd rather not know... but so far i hv no such luck... any lies told to me will come n bite the person who fabricated it in the arse at some point or rather....but hey, no 2 persons r alike....

PS - i find it easier to forgive n forget if the truth was told rather than me finding it out myself... cos then i know u hv no remorse... else u wud've fessed up to it... hence making the recovery much slower if at all... after all, better know the truth than prancing urself around looking like a fat pig thinking u're the prom queen...

ilyani idris said...

If we are in the position to lie, then we'll always think that way. Lie because we have to, and we don't want the other party to feel hurt. Nak jaga hati lah konon. But what if we are the person to be lied to?

Now we wouldn't want it to happen, do we? Personally I would appreciate being told the truth rather than being cheated for months, or even years. Although the real fact would sadden me, still, it would not be as bad as knowing kena tipu (eventually). Marah sebab the unlikeable act is one, marah kena tipu makes it double madness. Don't you think so?

So where do we set the line? When to lie and when not to?

siti nur razie said...

she actually looks fat in everything and nothing<----- aku gelak tak berenti2 ok bace this part. ahahahaha

tyiara rosli said...

i have no comments whatsoever for the main topic. but i do have some on the jargons and shit. "you should be learning the oil & gas jargons now" someone actually told me off. the problem is, if you learn business/economic jargons and accidentally use it in daily life, you'd be viewed as the intellectual kind. but if you happened to use O&G jargons outside work, hey, in no time, people would think you're some kind of pervert. seriously.

mikhail harith said...

Ty, you look fat in everything, but in nothing you look great! :-P Just an excuse to see you naked! Hahahhahahha!

tyiara rosli said...

eeewww! i don't ever wanna see my sister naked!! LOL.

fariz fahmi said...

that's some really cool writing nana...

Ty said...

Ainnie and Ilyani,
To lie or not to lie? And what if we are the one to be lied to? Hmm...that will be one whole topic on its own. I'll see if we can talk about that next. Thanks! ;)

Ctod,
Ahahaha..if you're fat, you're fat la kan. there's no point asking people around you if you're fat or not, ye tak? That's why they invented the mirror.

Pearl,
Who's that pervert?

Mike,
I can accept the truth as much as I can accept a lie. I would laugh at both. And yes, I am fat. And yes, my sister is right. You wouldn't want to cause you'll then have to struggle through 7 years of nightmares.

Pearl,
Little Miss Bitch. Hahahah!

Fariz,
Thanks for reading. I never thought you would read my crappy writings. ;)

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