Saturday, October 28, 2006

To Hate or not to Hate

Hatred is the drive, ignorance is the grease, together they propell a person to commit attrocities in the name of right. Ignorance and apathy are not the sole causes of mob justice, for hatred and fear are also powerful motivators. For the sake of safety, one will forgoe the processes of accurate inspection in order to more expediently reach a state of action. In matters of morality, caution must be allowed. All possible avenues of thought must be explored meticulously, leaving as little room for error as possible. The measure of a person's devotion to their cause can be determined by the amount they are willing to sacrifice for it. This can also be used to measure personal righteousness. How much are you willing to sacrifice for your cause? If a person is willing to give their life for their cause, then it is certainly just (at least in their eyes) and worthy of inquiry. Great wrongs are more likely to be commited by someone in power, who faces little consequence for their actions. If there are no consequences, then one can pursue their selfish desires unhindered. How many so called crusaders would risk their lives in pursuit of what they call righteousness?
What is right? Is not right a variable factor? Right is less of a standard, and more of an ideal. It characterizes justice, the proper and correct course of action for any situation. But on what standards to we base our definition of right? It is a very vague term, and so I prefer the standards of preservation and destruction. These can be easily reasoned, does something work for the preservation or the destruction of humankind or to the relevant society? Without logically demonstrated foundations for right and wrong, it leaves it as an undefined quality, dependent on religion, culture, social class, etc etc. When we determine right not by introspection, but by popularity, we give more power to the mob mentality. Many attrocities have been commited at the hands of entire populations, either directly through interaction, or indirectly through willful ignorance. According to mob justice, as an idea gains in popularity it gains in momentum, and as a result becomes accepted solely on the merit of acceptance. People will allign themselves to this moral concept out of a desire to be accepted and avoid ridicule. Thus it becomes a small matter for a great injustice to occur, due to the hive-mind of the people.
How can this be avoided? By encouraging an individual to create their own moral compass, and determine for themselves what constitutes right and wrong, we can decrease the likelihood of them accepting the values of another at face value. To this end behaviours like dissention, and questioning authority should be encouraged. However the present state of American culture discourages such acts with mandatory education, the structure of the work place, and the overwhelming atmosphere of "conform or fail" that is suffocating in our youth and still present in our adulthood. Since our youth we are taught by the abuse of our peers and the scoldings of our teachers that fitting in is the proper course, and that a life of self-dedication, safety, and security are paramount to all other priorities. The virtues of compassion, benevolence, and honesty are veritably unheard of in comparison to the lessons of 401k plans, college educations, and life long jobs to ensure the longevity of your family and your easy transition into retirement. Our life is planned before we even have a chance to figure out what its about.
Is it any wonder at our difficulty to learn, to accept and understand? All our lives those which are different have been dangerous, and because they were feared, they were persecuted. But this mindset must be broken, and we must relearn the virtues of our fathers, for we are again falling into the errors that had brought their predecessors to destruction.


Post a Comment

<< Home