Evil v Empathy


 Somebody (working in Animal Welfare) asked me today (28 August)… “If there is a choice, why do some people not make the one that is kind and nice?”

It’s a question I ask myself often. Naive as it may sound, I now think there are two different kinds of humans – those with Empathy, and those without, to whom the feelings of others mean nothing, and worse than nothing, because for these people, it’s actually enjoyable to cause pain to to other beings. It’s so enjoyable that it becomes their biggest obsession. And they spend a major portion of their lives trying to make it look as if their behaviour is actually justifiable and decent.

We are in the majority, but the minority who are compulsively cruel are capable of massive damage, because, by definition, their actions are not bound by the kind of morality that guides us.

We are fighting guns with pea-shooters and words.

But we must win in the end. Because we are in the right.

I’d be interested to hear people’s views on this. Am I being naive ? What is the explanation for evil behaviour ?


P.S. Before I get a sackful of outrage, please don’t think I’m suggesting that everybody who is involved with the badger cull is evil. Not at all. I know some of the proponents pretty well, now, and I’d never suggest that, for instance, Adam Quinney is anything other than a very decent family man, with plenty of empathy. Then you get into wondering how the beliefs in this hopelessly ill-conceived cull got so firmly ingrained in decent people. I think the answer may be that loyalties play a part, and for some of those involved, it’s hard for them to back out now, without being made to feel they are betraying their pals and colleagues. And it’s hard to admit that you’re wrong anyway. Sadly, there ARE a lot of people who love having a gun in their hands, and this policy is a gift for them.

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