top of page

Killing or Lying ? By Abdoulie Tamba

Author: Abdoulie Tamba ID# 102120562

Killing or lying, which is less harmful? This question, as philosophical as it might sound is an interesting question. Although at first the answer seems to be obvious but when one reflects deeply into the question it becomes evident   that there is more to the answer than the question suggests. Whichever of the two you chose you shouldn’t lose sight of the fact both are vices and choosing one only implies you have chosen the least, worst option of the two. This is in line with the universal moral perspective; killing and lying are vices.

In an ideal situation, where all the real life factors that can give rise to complex situations are absent, lying would be   less harmful than killing. But the problem with this is that it’s hypothetical because of the assumption that all the different factors are absent and this is highly unrealistic as there is wide chasm between reality and such theoretical situations. Also the two vices (killing and lying) are in many cases intertwined, one might be the cause and the other, the effect.  As such my position on the issue is neutral one and in the paragraphs below I give examples to back my stance.

Lying can be a reason for killing people. Many people tell lies to justify killing or to even kill. Politicians are especially known for this. They tell lies so that they can win support for their wars. A good example is the Iraq war. During the run up to the war the then U.S president, George Bush made up all kinds of lies to incite fear in the hearts of his countrymen in order to win support for the war. The results: deaths of hundreds of thousands of   people. Here lying was the cause and killing the effect.

In general, killing and lying are obnoxious crimes; in fact they are heinous crimes of the highest order. But there are rare cases, that these two vices can produce ‘good’ or positive outcomes.  A good example is telling a lie to save someone’s life or to save a relationship.  Many people are faced with such situations sometimes in their lifetime and usually its necessary that one tells a lie to prevent a big problem. Also killing can yield positive results in some cases, for example killing murderers like serial killers can save innocent lives. In such case committing a lesser crime (killing a serial killer) can prevent a bigger crime (killing of innocent people by the serial killer).

In conclusion, it’s clear from the last two paragraphs that lying and killing intertwined. And choosing the least worse of the two is rather impossible because different factors and situations can make one less harmful than the other.

2 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Blooms Taxonomy technique

My lecture on Ethic is on Tuesday (12/2/13) but since it is a holiday I only have to write what I have learned in the tutorial. As I mentioned before, since there was no lecture due to holidays, so Mr

What do you not wish for yourself, do not do to others

After Mr. Hamid explained the lecture on Eastern Ethics, I have gained some knowledge of eastern philosophers’ background and their ethical practices and theories. The lecture covered the ethical theo

We should follow the rules

Today’s lesson was quite an interesting lesson. It is about ethics from different countries and how they apply to their daily lives. The first country to introduce about the ethic is China. The famous


bottom of page