Conscience or cowardice? 225

 ‘Conscience,’ Hamlet says, ‘does make cowards of us all.’

Or does cowardice claim the name of conscience – steal its identity – in order to excuse itself? 

Conscience should drive us, as individuals, to do what we believe to be morally right. But it may be a self-flattering word we use to explain why we do certain things that we actually do out of craven cowardice itself, or the sort of moral vanity that makes us want to appear virtuous rather than to act virtuously.

Governments, nations, and crowds also cover their actions with the same deceptive claim, attributing to conscience what they really do out of weakness, fear, stupidity,  hypocrisy and ideological romanticism.  

False conscience calls itself by many other names, among them these: political correctness; respect for multiculturalism or ‘diversity’; a striving for ‘social justice’ or economic equality or ‘fairness’;  remorse for (largely imaginary) historical sins. Under such names all kinds of idiotic, unjust, destructive and evil things are done.    

Exempli gratia from the real world: 

In the US millions of voters elect an unqualified candidate to political office because he is black.

Navies refrain from capturing pirates, or (even better) summarily killing them, because ‘they have human rights’.

Liberal democratic welfare states keep and protect alien Islamic preachers of terrorism and sedition, lavishly house, feed, educate and medically treat them (and their pluralities of wives and families) at the expense of their intended victims, the indigenous population, because if they’re returned to their own countries they may be tortured or executed – or even because some witness at their possible trials might be tortured.

Western governments abrogate freedom because citizens use it to criticize Muslims and their beliefs. 

European police refrain from enforcing the law against Muslim offenders.  

In Britain the rule of a single Law of the Land, the very thing that makes it possible for people of different provenance to live together in harmony, is arbitrarily abandoned by the acceptance of Sharia as a second system of law, although it is incompatible with and contradictory to the enchorial system. 

Western nations reduce their defensive power to the point of ineffectiveness while vicious tyrannical regimes, inimical to the West and motivated by a declared intention of aggression, acquire arsenals of nuclear weapons. 

Governments interfere in markets and impoverish the people.  


Jillian Becker  November 21, 2008

Posted under Articles, Commentary by Jillian Becker on Friday, November 21, 2008

Tagged with , , , , , , , , ,

This post has 225 comments.