To lie or defy?

I have to travel by plane tomorrow with my little ones. Mercy has a milk allergy and drinks only soy milk, and we will be on the plane long enough where I will need to provide that for her. Everything I am reading online is fairly clear: the only two things permitted for those traveling with infants are formula and breast milk. So far, most people are telling me to pack the soy milk in a little travel bottle and just lie and say that it is formula. Since I have an infant with me, there is no reason why I couldn’t get away with that. Others suggest I plead my case with the security personnel when I get to the checkpoint. But, if they say no to me at that point and make me dump it I will be pretty stuck. The reality is that she won’t die without it, of course, but she will ask for it (cry for it even?) and it will be a longer, more difficult flight if I have to deny her (as if traveling with two under two is not already laden with challenges :)).

The lie seems the easier. But I have a thing about lying, and I am seriously unable to do it. Large or small. Doug laughs at me if I even try to slightly color the truth because I am so darn transparent that it is a joke to even see me attempt it. I simply cannot lie.

And so the dilemma…


  1. I suppose I wouldn’t see it as a lie personally. What is formulae really–a substitute for human breast milk. What is soy milk–likewise a substitute for human breast milk (at least in this context). If you don’t want to directly term it formulae, just say it is milk. I doubt you would be questioned further.
    While I support truth as an ethical basis for living, I would wonder if there is a danger in exalting truth-telling above all else. Can truth-telling become an idol? An end in itself, rather than the means by which an end (ethical living) is achieved?

  2. It’s not often I get to offer a simple solution. If they make you dump the soy milk at security just refill it at Starbucks before getting on the plane!!

    Have a great trip!!

  3. Jeff,
    You were right! No questions, no issue, no problem whatsoever.
    I think you are right too on the truth-telling thing. I would lie in a second if it meant protecting my kids (I think through different scenarios sometimes, partly due to where I live). My value for preserving their lives far surpasses my value for speaking the truth.

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