Friday, February 01, 2013

How Many, Piers?

     "How many children have to die?" Piers Morgan emotes the phrase with telegenic anguish.  He's such a sincere little fellow and he asks so often that I've been giving the matter considerable thought and I've figured out the magic number:

     All of them.  Every last one and more besides.

     If Piers is serious about wanting a perfectly just and even-handed world, a world where where no man ever raises his hand against his fellows, he needs to realize there's only one way of bringing that state of affairs about: we've all got to be dead.  All of us; all the little children, all the great big grotty adults -- TV presenters, too! -- and everyone in between.

     Then and only then will Piers' dream be realized.

     There's a reason the story of Cain and Abel is one of the oldest parts of the Bible; there's a reason archeologists find signs of violence on ancient human remains; there's a reason our closest cousins, the chimps, steal, fight and go to war: we're a violent species.  It's written into our genes.

     To be sure, we're more than that.  To be sure, much of the story of Progress is the story of violent impulses turned to good ends, sublimated in exploration, in research, in art--  But we can no more stop being violent than a lion can give up hunting and survive eating grass.

     And in a violent species, there are always some who are nothing but violent; some for whom the attraction of initiating force cannot be resisted.  There are even more who will respond to quell such behavior.  The first group generally feels no restraint from law or custom; the second does.

     If you attempt to "outlaw" violence or the tools of violence, the only group you hinder is the second one.


Anonymous said...

No, no! Because, like, we have police and stuff! And, like, you know, like, look at Europe! THEY don't have guns, and, like, it's ALWAYS been peaceful there.

/sarc said...

@docjim when seconds count the police are minutes away! Europe is not peaceful, you best get your facts straight!

Jess said...

He knows that. He can't stay on the air, without being contentious and controversial. That's worse than being ignorant, with an unbending opinion.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Well, on a related note: you know that guy who runs "Sea Shepard" and has that "Reality Show" on A+E called "Whale Wars"? Did you know that he really and truly and honestly believes that to save the Dying Mother Gaia, we need to kill off about 7 Billion people, and leave about 200,000 "Properly Trained Stewards" to Aid the poor little Critters in their Recovery. All who will be Sterilized after they have their Replacement Children, of course. And he's NOT Joking!

Roberta X said...

Yep, Les, I know. And to him I say, "You first."

Stuart the Viking said...

I like the way you put the while "violent species" thing.

I have used a similar argument saying that "evil exists", but that argument seemed to fall short because there are far to many people who no longer believe in the concept of "evil".

Their argument would go something like this: "He murdered babies by pelting them with baby bunnies? No, that person isn't EVIL, evil doesn't exist. That person is just doing bad things because he doesn't know any better."

I think I'll start using the violent species argument and see if I can get through any thick skulls that way.


Gewehr98 said...

"All of them..."

That's been ringing in my head all week, and it's eloquent as hell.

Stanley Kubrick was dead on with the apes braining each other in 2001: A Space Odyssey.