Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Hilary Bok on the Impossibility of Bringing Democracy Through Violence

Check out this piece by Hilzoy (i.e. Hilary Bok, professor of bioethics at Johns Hopkins). Thanks to Brian Gunn for passing it along!

A slice:

Violence is not a way of getting where you want to go, only more quickly. Its existence changes your destination. If you use it, you had better be prepared to find yourself in the kind of place it takes you to.

And another was this: liberation is not just a matter of removing an oppressive government. It can seem that way when you live under tyranny. Nothing is more comprehensible than people living in apartheid South Africa, or under Saddam, thinking: if only that government were removed from power, things would be better. They would have to be. After all, how could they possibly be worse?

Unfortunately, there are almost always ways in which things could be worse.

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