Monday, May 18, 2009

It's Human Nature

Mike S. Adams takes a break from complaining about how hard it is to be a conservative on campus to write about the differences between liberals and conservatives. He does correctly state that we see human nature differently.
The conservative sees man as born in a broken state. This tragic view of human nature sees man as selfish and hedonistic by design. Given his nature, it is no wonder a man chooses crime. It is a wonder he ever chooses conformity.

. . . the liberal sees things differently. Everyone is born “good” with a blank slate. To the extent that people become “bad” it is because “society” corrupted them. Nowhere does the liberal explain how combining many good people makes a bad society.
Fair enough as far as it goes; except that Adams misses a key factor in his analysis; Liberals see humans as changeable. If a human is mistreated or abused he might turn more towards extreme or evil ways of expressing himself. If a human is treated with respect or kindness he might turn more positive or good.

For Conservatives, it seems, the only salvation is that offered by Christianity; only Christ can purify a heart to make it good. Hence there's no point to trying to clean up slums and help poor inner city kids get into college. Unless they have been cleansed by Christ, such efforts accomplish nothing other than giving an already wicked and corrupt person more tools to pursue his wickedness and corruption.

Now when it comes to ultimate salvation, Christian Conservatives might be right. But when it comes to the here and now, they couldn't be more wrong or destructive in their beliefs. Because the assumption that bad people can't change leads to, as mentioned above, no reason to make life better for those struggling (of course when you combine it with the theory that those who are wealthy must have earned deserved their wealth and those who are poor are condemned by God or their own laziness, than you have twice the reason not to care about the poor).

Beyond that he specifically notes that Conservatives believe diplomacy to be a stupid waste of time. People who are our enemies are going to stay our enemies until we crush them (some how defeating our enemies and conquering their countries will make them our buddies).

At any rate it's not hard headed and rational to assume that humans cannot change; it's childish. The only constant in human nature is change. That change can be for better or worse, but it's only logical to figure out ways to encourage positive change.

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