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The other kind of hero

General Poetry - post, comment, review, critique
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Colm Roe
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by Colm Roe » Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:59 am

indar wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 8:03 pm
Theologians argue about whether good can come from evil.

Do they assume the evil person fights for the 'good' side. What if an evil person fights for the 'evil' side?
I suppose it depends on your point of view, and on who you ask.
The poem (IMO) almost implies that wife beaters make better 'warriors', from my experience they're all cowards.

ajduclos
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by ajduclos » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:24 am

I think the poem says even wife beaters can lay down their lives for "God and Country".... Not really sure what it all means other that we can all be cannon fodder.

Aj  

indar
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by indar » Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:50 pm

I'm not certain how well my hypothetical will work but here goes:

Say a woman jilts her lover so he kills her and sets her apartment on fire to eliminate the evidence of his evil deed. The apartment above catches fire and the occupant is also killed after which it is discovered that occupant is a cult leader who was planning a mass assault on a group of people perceived to be an enemy. The loss of a single innocent life saved the loss of perhaps hundreds of lives. Did good come from that evil deed? Can we celebrate the act?

ajduclos
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by ajduclos » Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:17 am

Linda -

Over the years I've looked at this from many angles.  As there are endless consequences of any act, good or evil, yielding good or evil results, negative acts cannot be justified even if by chance a good results.

My humble opinion...........

Aj

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Tracy Mitchell
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by Tracy Mitchell » Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:59 am

indar wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:50 pm
I'm not certain how well my hypothetical will work but here goes:

Say a woman jilts her lover so he kills her and sets her apartment on fire to eliminate the evidence of his evil deed. The apartment above catches fire and the occupant is also killed after which it is discovered that occupant is a cult leader who was planning a mass assault on a group of people perceived to be an enemy. The loss of a single innocent life saved the loss of perhaps hundreds of lives. Did good come from that evil deed? Can we celebrate the act?

Good came from the act.  But not the planned or intentional doing of good.  It is the choice to do good which is praiseworthy, not an accidental result.  Closer to the edge -- is a man entitled to approbation when he gives food to poor people solely for the fact that it makes him personally feel good?    Is the act more or less praiseworthy if he acts grudgingly and only because he knows it is the right thing to do?  How about if his sole motivation is fear of a vengeful God who threatens to burn him in hell for eternity?  Just asking.  :)

Sorry for perpetuating the hijack, Dave.  I'm done now.   :roll:
 

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Colm Roe
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by Colm Roe » Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:40 am

Theologians argue about whether good can come from evil.

In your example (Linda) a guy commits an evil act.
In the process many lives were saved. So it can be said that something good accidentally came from the evil act.
But I assume the theological argument really relates to a deliberate act of evil that hopes to reduce/remove an even bigger evil, like killing baby Hitler. (Who hasn't had that conversation)
My religious take on the matter is that only God can take a life.
My personal take is if I'm handed a knife to kill the baby I'd refuse. The obvious reason; if you knew in advance he was going to be a tyrant, you could, instead of killing him, try to change his history. If you realised you couldn't do that...kill the bastard!
But there'd be so many people to kill. So many countries have committed atrocities...pretty much any country that's gone to war has a list of leaders who should have been 'taken out'.
Then you have local military decisions. Collateral damage. A few (or many) women/children killed to take out one 'bad guy'.
Then you're getting into other arguments; is any war just? OK, defending yourself is...but most countries who did that had previously invaded other countries for financial/political gain....or for egotistical reasons!
On a personal level. If I knew my daughter's boyfriend was going to kill her, and the only way to prevent it was to kill him I'd do it. Good for her. Bad for me. It would be me being evil...then going to prison. Bad for me.
The question seems to suggest an absolute idea of good and bad. That all women/children collaterally killed are innocent! Which can't be true.
So for me the answer to the question is that good may come from evil...but it's always accidental!
Apols for hijacking Dave :)

Dave
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Re: The other kind of hero

Post by Dave » Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:57 pm

There is no need for apologies concerning the thread. It has been an interesting discussion even if it has strayed far from the poem. As for the poem, it should have been merely a response to the cliche ridden histrionics of eulogising the war dead through cliche. Another cliche incidently being that the soldiers were all innocent, ignorant victims of propapanda. In fact it insults them to think so. The poem itself neither sets out to defend or attack war as such.

As for good deeds done in the course of "evil" deeds. I go with the line that they are just that. Badly intended deeds that provided positive results. The morality of the results should not be confused with the morality of the act or indeed the morality of the intention: three distinct elements of one complete act. 

As for good and evil, I believe in neither - these are lazy terms for acts we find hard to explain.

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