In view of a couple, where one engages in various affairs before they met with their current spouses, would it be right to lay the whole truth out, however dark it is? This question will be best answered by differentiating utilitarianism and Kantian ethics or deontology. Utilitarianism, by Bentham, is a theory that argues on conformation to utility principle. The theory is focused on greatest happiness, whereby, an action is right if it increases happiness and decreases pain. Deontology, on the other hand, argues on the principle of duty. A deontologist will tend to fulfill what is morally right irrespective of the consequences of his or her actions. A right action, to a deontologist is that which conforms to the moral law (Jost & Wuerth, 2011).
The tale of a little white lies then focuses on a couple that has a dark past and wants to get engaged. What would be right? A dark past may range from prostitution, hardcore crime, drug abuse, and any other vices that the society morally abhors. In the case of a woman disclosing a promiscuous past to a potential lifetime partner, would it really be necessary? Would it be necessary for a man to disclose the number of first degree murders he committed before he reformed?
Reasoning from my personal point of view, I would not need to disclose such information as I would hurt my partner’s feelings. Above that, the consequences of disclosing such information are unknown and might be disastrous to the relationship. Some information might lead to lack of trust or create fear in the relationship. In the case that a criminal’s past life is actually a past life or a promiscuous past life is forgotten, then such information is unnecessary in my view.
According to Kantian ethics, one should act according to a categorical imperative. This entails acting in a manner that would also favor the actor in universal law. This theory subscribes to the requirement of a moral obligation in ones course of