lying is wrong, no ifs ands or buts about it<br />
truth hurts sometimes, but its necessary...it keeps reality in check for us all
Perhaps lying will protect at that exact moment. But chances are, the truth will eventually be found out and feelings will be hurt.
I think that is probably an overused excuse.
a lot of people are probably going to tell you that they would never lie...blah blah blah... but I think this is one of those things that unless you are in that specific situation you really can't say for sure. A couple of years ago I would have put on my righteous hat and told you that nothing good ever came from a lie but consider this: my kid was excited about adopting this beautiful dog, i got a phone call the same day we were picking him that he had some respiratory problems and the shelter didn't think he was going to make it, a few hour later they called to say the dog was dead. I couldn't tell my kid that, she was so happy and well, it is xmas time. I lied and made myself the bad guy and said that I had re-considered and that the dog was too big for our family. I gave her the chance to pick another one. I will in the future confess my lie but not right now.
Sometimes in extreme circumstances you may have to deceive or withold information to protect those you love. An outright lie to a direct question is never good and guilt is dreadfully destructive so always needs to be for incredibly good and never selfish reasons
You can't expect morals to work like math equations in a corrupt world and a chaotic universe. If an axe murderer came to your house looking to see if your wife is home, you're not going to go "Oh yes! She's actually upstairs!" If you're in a country where a silent genocide is being done on your people, you may not want to tell an authority that you belong to that group of people. If you're hiding away someone undocumented with their family who was fleeing their war-torn poverty-stricken country and the feds ask you about such things, you're not going to give them away.
This applies in smaller cases to. If you're saving up for a surgery that your insurance refuses to pay and you need to keep your food aid, some may choose to hide that information. If some laws exploit and use extortion to make money off people who are struggling, you may have to come up with stories or reasons that will allow you to get the care or services you need. If you know a person has ulterior motives and messed philosophies that will treat you differently if they knew something about you, and you find yourself having to deny or confirm something, some may choose to deny that detail about yourself.
If it's an awfully hard hard line, especially when you value sincerity, honestly and openness. But too much honesty is a taboo, people will use information against you, people will judge you and treat you unfairly, places will discriminate, corrupt laws will want to know everything about your personal lives to subdue or control you, etc... It's a case by case basis. Again, morals are not equations, sometimes applying them to real life in this time is like 1 + 1 - Fish.