a writer's journal - politics, music, american culture, esoteric aspects of life, and stories

Sunday

On killing things

This article provoked a debate here to which I contributed.  I don't think I've ever had occasion to mention it to anyone, but my views on ethics led me to the conclusion, years ago, that I am not troubled by infanticide*, which is a pretty odd view.  In fact it's repugnant to most people.  When I realized this about myself, I wondered, "What other strange conclusions might my beliefs result in?"  It is as though, lurking inside me, is a latent army of hobgoblins - maybe without realizing it, I also believe that rape is justifiable against enemy combatants?  (I don't believe I do).  Of course, I didn't approve of infanticide before I had given it much thought - I disapproved of it.  I simply did what we all do, I clothed my psyche in various beliefs mostly taken from the ragshop of my culture, and some of my beliefs color-clashed (were logically inconsistent) with others, which lamentable situation persists in me to this day in other relatively obscure ways of course.
 
I mention this about infanticide because that's what I intend this blog to be all about, I guess: a place to drag these ideas out into some sort of very limited public forum, to see if I have the nerve to air my thoughts.  But what's essential is not that you understand why I believe in such a horrible thing as infanticide; merely that you might wonder as I do, "if my own ethical (or, say, aesthetic or erotic) precepts were kept in better order, what hobgoblins might lurk there?"
 
*There is the special case of sex-selective infanticide as practiced in asian nations such as India and China, where boy children are prized and girl children may require dowries, or have cooties, or something.  Here, I can cleverly finagle my ethical stand (which I am not even bothering to explain to you, because above all I think my belief about infanticide is quite unimportant) by assuming that infanticide of girls is symptomatic of the oppression of females all over the world and especially in Asia... but then, I triumphantly note that by reducing the female population relative to the males, an ingenious evolutionary strategy is being exemplified, of the sort that amphibians excel at, which will reduce the population locally, and force males to emigrate to find mates elsewhere (such as the U.S. and Europe).
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