Actors vs. Actions

We have created a world (or more truthfully, we have destroyed our civilization to the point) where actions no longer matter.  The actor is everything.  Left and right seem incapable of critiquing behavior without knowing the identity of the individual who acted.

Closely related is the “what about so-and-so?” defense.  Forget about the morality or appropriateness of what your guy did.  The other side’s guy did the same thing, so your guy gets a pass.

Eventually, we will get to the fringes of civility, where we will be forced to agree that there are some things that are beyond the pale.  As awful as some behavior has already become, it’s staggering to consider just how blatantly evil actions will have to be before we can agree on what is unacceptable.

Will we test the limits of human depravity before we come to our senses?  I hope not.  The 20th century offers plenty of examples of how fragile life is.  Wars, diseases, and despots all wreaked havoc on humanity.  If we can channel our ambitions toward helping each other rather than dominating each other, there may be hope.

 

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