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Liberal Iranian
Liberal as in Liberty and Freedom. Iranian as in Cyrus and Ferdowsi.
Monday, April 16, 2007
The Blame of the Crime
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Strange times we live in! A great number of people believe in fantasticly unrealistic explanations of the ongoings of the world. There are different levels of this divorce from reality, but the one that hits me hardest is the utterly amazing places where some people put the blame of an apparent crime. For example, a suicide bomber blows himself up in a Baghdad market killing tens of ordinary Iraqis. They tell us that the crime is that of the United States. Of course the US (along with the Iraqi government) bears the responsibility for the security and safety of the streets of Baghdad at which they are doing a dismal job. But this is not the sort of blame the US is burdened with by our mostly intellectual fellow citizens. She shoulders the blame, we are told, of the crime of killing civialns itself, as if it is the US that has given the bomber his intent, his plans and his bombs to carry out the attack. (Caution: the US might have given him the motivation, objectively, but that is different from the intent, which depends on the worldview of the subject.)

Imagine a gang of thieves take on a bank, hold the people and the clerks hostage and kill the security officer. If the number of such incidents in the city is increasing we could perhaps blame the police and city authorities for failing to ensure the safety of the city. But by what sort of twisted logic could we blame the actual killing of the security officer on the police? That would mean that we should jail the police chief or some such person instead of or beside the shooting criminal, with no criminal intent, planning or execution whatsoever relating to the charge. (Of course I am assuming there are no complicating details here.)

Such moral confusions, dilutions and inversions pose a mortal threat to our existence as a civilized society. What's the cure? I'm not sure. But the only way I know of attemting to cure this illness is by trying to find convincing arguments that show the falsehood of such irrational modes of thinking. 
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