JUSTICE OR CHARITY
This is one of the most important articles I have read lately. It is extremely fitting as an example of what is wrong with our country these days.
We supposedly have "Christians" in power in Washington as well as in our own state of Mississippi who purport to believe they are "right" and are doing "good" things for "the people." However, they apparently do not truly believe in the ethical principals stated in this article. It would do them all well to take these truths to heart in order that our country may begin to get back to what it is supposed to stand for – Liberty and Justice for ALL.
Justice or Charity - by Brigitte Frase –Recovering a Sense of Fairness
From the article: " Compassion is too fickle a virtue to base laws and conduct on. Mercy is always strained; it “droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven” perhaps, but unequally, leaving a lot of people to suffer drought.
The concept of justice has fallen on hard times, reduced to a narrow meaning of judgment. It has become synonymous with punishment; we bring criminals to justice, we mete out justice. We (American citizens and the leaders we have chosen, at least since Reagan) are not, as far as I can see, much interested in the greater and more honorable role “justice” has played in philosophy, religion, and public policy—from Plato and Aristotle, through Thomas Aquinas, David Hume, and John Stuart Mill, and continuing in modern times in the work of Simone Weil and John Rawls.
The rich don’t need justice. They are charitable to each other and may on occasion let some loose change trickle down to the deserving poor. The wobbly middle class is out of breath trying not to fall down. And the underclass have only justice, their government’s willingness to play fair, to count on. But, like the poor and black victims of Katrina, they are counted out. After a brief period of hand-wringing rhetorical acknowledgment, they fade back into official nonexistence."
"The first and second reigning Bushes value charity over justice. “A thousand points of light” and faith-based charitable organizations are supposed to take care of the hard up. Not only are there not enough religious and other helping organizations for all the needy and mistreated people out there, there is something fundamentally patronizing in the relationship of helper and helped."