Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Evil is an action, not a person

Albuquerque Libertarian Examiner: Evil is an action, not a person

Does "evil" exist? I think so. Are statists evil? No. But their actions often are. To me, "evil" is "actions which harm the innocent (those who do not deserve to be harmed at this moment)". Notice I consider actions to be evil; not people. People can commit evil, but can't BE evil. Unless, perhaps, they honestly do nothing that ameliorates the harm they cause to the innocent they cross paths with. Most of these people have worked for the state during their greatest harm.

This is why I don't consider Bush or Obama to be evil. (But, Dick Cheney and Nancy Pelosi......well...) Bush committed a LOT of evil during his reign, and Obama is trying really hard to out-do Bush's legacy of evil, and will most likely succeed. Each president seems to do a little more evil than the previous president, since the harm is cumulative. Each president builds on the atrocities of his predecessor.

But, getting back to real people: I have never met anyone in real life that I truly considered to be "evil", although some people I have known were pushing the margins. I have also never know any real people who didn't at some point do something that harmed innocent people. Myself included. Such is the trap of thinking of people in terms of good and evil. Judge the actions instead.

A person can have the worst notions or philosophy possible, but if they do not act on it and thereby harm the innocent, they have committed no evil. Most statists who commit evil prefer to send others to do their deeds for them, which also makes them cowards. It means they have violated the ZAP ("No human being has the right, under ANY circumstances, to initiate force against another human being, nor to advocate or delegate its initiation." You can wish for a collectivist society that allows no "opting out", but as long as you don't act on it, or somehow cause it to become real, no one has been harmed and no evil has been committed.

It is my intention to do no more evil.