Long before Tea Party candidate Christine O’Donnell rocked the Delaware GOP by upending establishment favorite Mike Castle, she founded a group named the Savior’s Alliance for Lifting the Truth (SALT). SALT focuses on promoting Christian morality among Generation X and places particular emphasis on always telling the truth. In 1998, while O’Donnell was a guest on Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, she elaborated on this point, arguing that “telling the truth is always the right thing to do, I believe, and that’s what always gets you out of a situation.”
Comedian Eddie Izzard pressed her on just how far she would take her anti-lying beliefs. Izzard asked O’Donnell whether or not she would lie to Nazis who showed up at her door during WWII and demanded to know if she were hiding any Jewish people in her house. O’Donnell refused to even entertain the notion of concealing the truth from Nazis in that scenario because “you never have to practice deception”:
O’DONNELL: A lie, whether it be a lie or an exaggeration, is disrespect to whoever you’re exaggerating or lying to, because it’s not respecting reality.
MAHER: Quite the opposite, it can be respect.
IZZARD: What if someone comes to you in the middle of the Second World War and says, ‘do you have any Jewish people in your house?’ and you do have them. That would be a lie. That would be disrespectful to Hitler.
O’DONNELL: I believe if I were in that situation, God would provide a way to do the right thing righteously. I believe that!
MAHER: God is not there. Hitler’s there and you’re there.
O’DONNELL: You never have to practice deception. God always provides a way out.
In addition to the fact that O’Donnell’s unwillingness to lie about the Jews’ whereabouts would have almost certainly resulted in their capture and imprisonment, an important question must be asked: Does O’Donnell believe that those brave Gentile families who hid Jews from the Nazis weren’t righteous because they practiced deception?
At the end of the show, O’Donnell also proclaimed that “we took the Bible and prayer out of public schools, now we’re having weekly shootings practically.”
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