For simplicity’s sake, I’m going to tag all of the upcoming unethical doings in the wake of the latest school shooting tragedy as part of the Sandy Hood Ethics Train Wreck, which also included the Newtown shooting freakout. They are all the same issue, with the same rhetoric, the same appeals to emotion, and many of the same players, dunces and villains. “History repeats itself, and that’s one of the things that’s wrong with history,” Clarence Darrow said.
It is particularly nauseating, in my view, to have to listen and read the “other countries don’t have this problem!” talking point. Yes, the United States is unique in a lot of ways. The major point of uniqueness is that the US allows its citizens unusual freedom, and thus attracts and has always attracted risk-takers, iconoclasts, eccentrics, nut-cases, heroes, those who resent authority, and many who think that the guarantee of liberty and the opportunity to succeed or fail is the same as a promise of success. This, in turn, means that among the unpleasant byproducts of our liberties is more violence and more crime (also more personal responsibility). “We have spawned a new race here-rougher simpler, more violent, more enterprising, and less refined. We’re a new nationality and we require a new nation,” Ben Franklin tells John Dickinson in “1776,” and while that is only a manufactured quote from various writings of Adams and Franklin, Ben was right, as usual. The Bill of Rights reflects the needs and aspirations of that “new race,” so does the Constitution’s emphasis on the right to bear arms, and so does the proclivity of that race to abuse our unusual treasure of rights. For human beings and nations, the greatest strengths are often the greatest flaws. We pay a large and sometimes bloody price for our liberties and ideals, but if one supports the American experiment and where it has brought us, the conclusion must be that the cost is worth it.
Not everyone is cut out to be an American. Those who don’t like the culture should consider relocating somewhere less stressful, and accept the reduced upside in exchange for a more sedate set of risks.
That’s the lesson of the clip above from “The Third Man” above, in the final speech of the film by Orson Wells as the mysterious rogue Harry Lime.
1.The pro-abortion signature significance keeps on coming! CNN’s Dana Bash to the Governor of Arkansas: “Arkansas already struggles to support vulnerable children. Nearly 1 in 4 children in Arkansas lives in poverty….Do you really think that your state is prepared to protect and care for even more children if abortion does become illegal there?”
Bash did not get the answer she apparently anticipated, which would have been something like, “No, you’re right, Dana. It makes mores sense to kill them. Thanks for setting me straight.”
2. Nah, there’s nothing hypocritical about “Historically Black Colleges and Universities”…Morehouse college, one of the HBCUs, is facing backlash from alumni because it dared to hire a white woman as its new “Chief Brand Officer and Vice President of Strategic Communications, Marketing, and Admissions.” Inside Higher Ed reported that the announcement was followed by an outpouring of calls and emails to the college from alumni questioning the decision. The reviled white woman replied to some negative comments on social media, defending herself and asserting her commitment to stay in the job, but later deleted her responses. One alum called the hiring decision an “INSULT to the legacy of Morehouse and a blow to the Brand, ” adding, “Just wondering how long before Morehouse ceases to recognize itself. Six months? Let’s take bets on how long before it’s not about Black Men at all. If there are any Morehouse Men who see what I see they should speak up and stop pretending this is okay.” Another wrote, that he had “yet to see a reasonable explanation of this anywhere.”
What, “diversity, equity and inclusion” doesn’t count?
Some said Kirby’s hiring demonstrated that the White House leadership believes that the first African American White House press secretary needs “adult supervision;” another Democrats called the competent white man’s hiring “demeaning,” and “insulting.”
And that is what happens when a President elevates race, gender and sexual orientation above actual qualifications in an important job! As Pete Seeger sang, “When will they ever learn?’
5. “The Lincoln Lawyer” is unethical. Netflix’s new series “The Lincoln Lawyer,” based on the Michael Connelly novels, included a version of the unethical “evidence bluff” most famously illustrated in film by Tom Cruise’s imaginary “flight log” evidence in “A Few Good Men” and by Abe Lincoln’ almanac gambit in American legal history.
The “Lincoln Lawyer”(so named because the recovering addict LA trial lawyer used to practice out of his car) represents a defendant whom a cop claims assaulted him. The client swears it’s a lie, and that the cop assaulted him because of a dispute involving a woman they both had been romantically involved with. The defendant has a rap sheet with other assaults and related charges, so the DA and the judge are pushing for a plea deal. There is no video of the incident because the police officer had turned off his camera. LL stops the annoyed judge from scheduling the trial by saying that he had just come upon new evidence that might make a trial unnecessary: a video from a camera on the street where the incident took place. He hands the DA the thumb-drive and says, “Let’s watch this with the judge.” The prosecutor sees the cop furiously signaling him, goes over and confers, and drops the charge.