Thursday 17 December 2020

'Would you lie to Nazis who asked if you were hiding Jews in your basement when you were?'

'Would you lie to Nazis who asked if you were hiding Jews in your basement when you were?' is used as a common argument against never lying. It is deeply flawed, though.

Firstly, it entails the Nazis actually trusting your word, which probably is not a good testament to your character if they would in such circumstances. They are committing a genocide, and if you are hiding Jews, you probably know the Nazis are bad people.

Secondly it assumes that the Nazis would not just go in and raid your home anyway, and beyond that that they would feel a need to ask you when they suspect you of working against them.

We assume that people will not self incriminate, and thus do not ask 'do you have drugs in your home' to determine whether or not to raid them for drugs. Why would the Nazis, who are quite evil suddenly trust the word of someone who says they are complying?

Of course, the argument is not a logical one, but one based on social force. If you would tell the truth to the Nazis, or not lie to them, you are therefore deemed a collaborator, even if in the scenario you are hiding Jews from them in your basement.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn teaches us that it is by lying that totalitarian regimes are upheld, such as the USSR which imprisoned him, and that by telling the truth in all things, that they fall. The Nazis were only able to gain power because the people of Germany were prepared to accept lies and lie themselves. Truth is the best disinfectant for tyranny.

So, when the Nazis come to your door looking for Jews, be silent or tell the Nazis that they serve an evil regime. Don't be cowardly.

No comments:

Post a Comment

No spam, junk, hate-speech, or anti-religion stuff, thank you. Also no libel, or defamation of character. Keep it clean, keep it honest. No trolling. Keep to the point. We look forward to your comments!

Popular Posts - This Week

Popular Posts This Month

Popular Posts | All TIme