Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Democratic Greyness

Moral greyness is the essence of democracy. Absolutism is the antithesis of democratic thought. The laws in this country are flexible and generally open to interpretation. This is why our country has lasted so long. If the laws we wrote were all set in stone, they would not keep up with changes in society and changes in value systems.
Most people’s value system is not as stable or as consistent as we would like to think. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are all moral situationlists to some extent. Picking up guns and shooting a lot of people is generally viewed as anti-social and destructive behavior. But, in a battle field, this is the kind of behavior which is actively encouraged, even required.
This is because moral distinctions require some kind of context. As the context changes, then so does the moral distinctions people make.
This is not to say "anything goes." Rather, our sense values and morality should have a sense of balance and preparation.
What is democracy, after all, but a compromise between totalitarism and anarchy?


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