Light and dark, good and evil, right and wrong. These are age-old, well-worn concepts, but not at all black and white in their interpretation. Perception, personal filters and preconceived notions all influence our determination of morality. One man’s justice is another’s misery. Should the good of the many override the concerns of the one?
This is a minefield of controversy, with individual grievances subject to religion, culture, law enforcement and the legal system, to name a few influences. There are crimes of passion, lunacy, greed and power. Atrocious acts are committed in the name of religion or perceived ethnic superiority. How often does the punishment fit the crime?
So many issues arise in the course of meting out justice: the death penalty, mandatory sentencing, the value of rehabilitation behind bars and the risk of reoffending. Then there are cases of innocent individuals being executed or spending decades behind bars.
J.R.R. Tolkien once said, “Deserves it! I daresay he does. Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends”.
Many of the greatest travesties of our time do not take place between human beings but are matters of man versus nature. A multitude of species are being driven to extinction, and our planet polluted and ravaged.
Once again, these are perilous topics, with room for many viewpoints. Who is right?
This blog offers a forum to ask the questions, if not necessarily to settle upon the answers.