Archive | May 8, 2011

Ready-mix moralism + bland generalizations = ethical tofu

May 8, 2011


A question: Do three fingers still point back at me when I wag at society’s I-told-you-so finger-waggers? We hear their scolds when they crawl from the think-tank lair in times of strife and doubt, spewing reprimands. They know nothing of the Freudian id’s dark elation. All borders are black lines; all days are bright; there is no moral murk and fog. Their memories are cleansed of New York’s volcano-like plumes, which I saw from the Tappan Zee Bridge and the Garden State Parkway on September 11, 2001, and they feel no ambivalence over the death of a mass murderer and a self-made symbol. Even worse, they’re blind to their own insensitivity as they argue for compassion. They haul out their favorite Bible verses (Proverbs 24:17: “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles.”), but neglect Scripture’s ambivalence (Proverbs 11:10: “When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices, and when the wicked perish there are shouts of gladness.”). Their lack of empathy swallows the merits of their arguments.

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