People Are Basically Good—Discuss

There is more criminality today than in past centuries.

  • Agree.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Disagree.

    Votes: 4 57.1%
  • Impossible to know.

    Votes: 3 42.9%

  • Total voters
    7

EnolaGaia

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I've heard versions of it before - often used by Libertarian types.
Can't help thinking that it's a bit of a logical fallacy - or, at least, often applied in a way that makes it so. If you don't have the law in the first place then of course, technically speaking, it can't be broken - doesn't mean people aren't out there doing that shit. It's a bit like the idea that the less medical testing you do, the less cases of a disease you'll have - which some other great thinker came up with. Forget who.
Whether or not Cicero used that exact phrase, he certainly expressed the point it was intended to illustrate - i.e., there's a difference between legal / illegal versus right / wrong. He was drawing the contrast between the domain of morals / ethics and the domain of formal laws / regulations.
 

Spookdaddy

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Whether or not Cicero used that exact phrase, he certainly expressed the point it was intended to illustrate - i.e., there's a difference between legal / illegal versus right / wrong. He was drawing the contrast between the domain of morals / ethics and the domain of formal laws / regulations.
It's hard not to sympathise with the 'too many laws' argument - and I get that, possibly in the case of both apparent sources, the argument concerned the tensions between natural and positive law; a discussion which I think is misunderstood by some of those who use it.

Both sources come from periods when many things that even the most libertarian of us would blanch at these days were perfectly legal. Over-legislation is one thing, and I wouldn't want to minimise the potential harm involved; however - and this will be anathema to golden agers who believe that every generation contributes to the further dissipation of humanity - maybe we have more laws because we strive to be better people. I suspect that our ideas about what constitutes natural law have also changed somewhat.
 
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Naughty_Felid

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There is a huge biochemical influence on people that shape who they are way before you can get to right or wrong as a philosophical idea.

For example, the access to cheap methamphetamines and now synthetic cannabis over several generations are producing children that are so damaged they'll be in and out of institutions all their lives. Not just damage to the brain, but also the horrible destructive social damage - as the families are also highly damaged and dangerous to their kids.

Really it's an epidemic. Also, Social media is having another destructive influence - kids now find it ok to harm themselves.
 

GNC

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One of my cousin's daughters is having to change schools because she's being bullied so badly. Maybe some people are basically good, but there are plenty of people happy and content with victimising and intimidation to keep themselves on an even keel. Don't know if you can blame drugs, but I bet social media plays a part.
 

Mythopoeika

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One of my cousin's daughters is having to change schools because she's being bullied so badly. Maybe some people are basically good, but there are plenty of people happy and content with victimising and intimidation to keep themselves on an even keel. Don't know if you can blame drugs, but I bet social media plays a part.
That kind of thing doesn't need drugs in order to happen. Back when I was young, drugs weren't so available - yet there were still bullies and people who were just downright nasty.
 

GNC

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That kind of thing doesn't need drugs in order to happen. Back when I was young, drugs weren't so available - yet there were still bullies and people who were just downright nasty.
I agree, but my point was more that social media is a great enabler for bullies.
 

GNC

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That said, social media merely amplifies what's there already. We live in a world now where everything has to be binary: for/against, pro/anti, with no room for nuance.

I believe most people are capable of great good, but the same people can be awful in the wrong circumstances. It's dangerous to label everyone as either good or evil, we're a lot more complicated than that.
 

feinman

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One of my cousin's daughters is having to change schools because she's being bullied so badly. Maybe some people are basically good, but there are plenty of people happy and content with victimising and intimidation to keep themselves on an even keel. Don't know if you can blame drugs, but I bet social media plays a part.
What I remember about bullying when I was a child (and I have been a bully before, unfortunately), is that it is often done to prove oneself to another to cement friendships or social connections; by attacking another person with fewer connections as proof of fealty to an individual or group, one can gain friendship or admittance into a group. If a child is under emotional stress from events at home, they might be even more likely to act violently toward another person to gain favor.
 

GNC

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What I remember about bullying when I was a child (and I have been a bully before, unfortunately), is that it is often done to prove oneself to another to cement friendships or social connections; by attacking another person with fewer connections as proof of fealty to an individual or group, one can gain friendship or admittance into a group. If a child is under emotional stress from events at home, they might be even more likely to act violently toward another person to gain favor.
Yes, it's that binary thing again - you're either for us or against us. And you don't always get to choose.
 

feinman

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Yes, it's that binary thing again - you're either for us or against us. And you don't always get to choose.
I'm really sorry to hear about her situation. Kids can be real jerks sometimes, but luckily a lot of them change for the better. I hope things get a lot better now! :)
 

feinman

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Yes, it's that binary thing again - you're either for us or against us. And you don't always get to choose.
Yup, it's that stupid ape stuff again.
 
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