The Love That Forgives And The Nation That Struggles

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54 Responses

  1. tm says:

    I would be grateful for your thoughts on particular approaches to combating injustice.
    As a lawyer I have done a fair bit of volunteer and pro bono work, but I don't really know of great mechanism through which I could fight injustice 30 minutes a week.

  2. Sure I want to do something about Evil. But then again, can you define what is evil? Who determines what is evil and what's not?
    So let's start by determining that we humans are unfit to determine Good and Evil, unless it's a very extreme case, like this bombing. The KKK seems to be full with hate, being even fuelled by it. But so are many people who are against the KKK! Or against other extremist organisations like the Muslims or the Freedom Fighters during WWII. Fortunately, those French and Dutch rebels who fought the aggressive Germans during WWII were considered heroes, since their side won. And the Germans are Evil, since "they" killed millions of Jews. Had they lost, the Germans would be the good guys instead.
    It's all true. There is, for example, a case where Genocide is just ignored simply because society is profiting from it. For example, many people seem to forget the huge amount of Native American tribes that used to exist before Europeans entered the continent with their African slaves and cheao labourers from Asia.
    So, what does it mean? Well, what I want to say is: Don't hate Evil! It would make you yourself Evil too.
    Things that have happened in the past cannot be changed. But we can try to prevent those things from happening again by providing proper education and by removing Evil people from society. And we should do this without hate, without malice. And we should help the victims of Evil in any way we can, to make sure they won't become Evil themselves out of hatred towards those who abused them.

  3. Tarrou says:

    "What if everyone who read this decided to devote half an hour this week to do something to fight evil and injustice?"

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that in terms of the world at large, nothing changes.

    "Fighting injustice" is something that happens in the movies. In the real world, the best most of us can manage is to live well, to be kind to our neighbors, loyal to friends and family and generally conduct ourselves like decent human beings. And that is something you can't just do for thirty minutes. It takes a lifetime.

    "Fighting injustice" sounds good, but what is meant by it? Which injustice are we to fight? How do we determine what is injustice, and once that is done, how do we determine which of the millions of injustices to focus on? Will our actions have positive consequences, or are we just going to rail against those evil "other people" who have different opinions than we do?

  4. phunctor says:

    Wim Ten Brink, some people have a thing called a conscience. This makes treating good and evil purely as social constructs problematic. They won't go along. Persecute them, torture them, kill them. They still won't go along.

    Others prefer to suck the dick of power. And who am I to say they're wrong?

  5. Lizard says:

    "We can't do everything, so let's do nothing."
    "Our decisions about who to help are ultimately arbitrary, so let's help nobody."
    "History is written by the winners, so let's ignore our personal ideals until someone tells us what we'll be praised for after we're dead."

    When you recognize that the bulk of internet communication is social signalling of one sort or another, it's kind of interesting to ponder what kind of people wish to send these signals, and to whom they're signalling. Fortunately, I've already passed the misanthropic event horizon.

    (My wife does the Injustice Fighting in our family; I help by supporting her in it financially and emotionally , and trying to at least not make the world more unjust.)

  6. Ken White says:

    Well, Tarrou, whatever anyone does, we can rely on you to be where you're unwelcome to shit on it.

  7. Ken White says:

    @tm: maybe your thirty minutes a week is aggregated over a year of pro bono work to help people who can't afford counsel so they can protect their rights. That fights injustice.

  8. HandOfGod137 says:

    This just makes me feel I should be out doing something. The EDL (England's very own Nazi party) are marching near me this week, and there's a counter-demonstration planned. It's not much, but I'm going.

  9. Chris says:

    "If you doubt me, consider how the world of 2013 is different than the world of 1963. Dream of what the world of 2063 could be."

    Realistically, we'll probably just be racist against robots instead of people with different skin colors.

  10. Scott K says:

    CNN has this article on the impacts on the surviving siblings that I found very interesting.

  11. JDM says:

    @Chris: I disagree/

    The world is, in many ways, better in 2013 than it was in 1963, and 1963 was a whole world better than 1913 (when legal segregation was the norm) or 1863 (when slavery was the norm in some places.)

    Martin Luther King stated that "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." I chose to share Dr. King's optimism that the recent history of our species is one of progress toward civil equality, not merely the invention of new vices. From the feudal lords of medieval Europe arose a "republic" of white, male landowners. Now we have a republic that, on paper, treats people of different races, genders, and wealth similarly. I am certain that another 50 years will find our attitudes more in line with the ideals that now we have, bravely, enacted into our laws.

    Oh, and what will I do for justice this week. I'm a child abuse doctor. I'll make sure I work 30 minutes more than I am paid this week, it a small contribution, but its one that I do well!

  12. En Passant says:

    Tarrou wrote Sep 15, 2013 @2:42 pm:

    "What if everyone who read this decided to devote half an hour this week to do something to fight evil and injustice?"

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that in terms of the world at large, nothing changes.

    Opportunities to thwart such evil as those murders occur when they occur, not at our summons. Sometimes that effort of "half an hour this week" seems to yield no useful result. But it prepares the mind to recognize and use the great opportunities fluently and effectively when they present themselves.

    Practice won't necessarily get you to Carnegie Hall. But not practicing guarantees you won't get there.

  13. Ken White says:

    @Chris

    Realistically, we'll probably just be racist against robots instead of people with different skin colors.

    If you would just drop the librul blinders from your eyes which have been clouded by the lamestream media in our feminized society you could read web sites like prideinourspecies.com and see that robots are objectively inferior.

  14. En Passant says:

    Fer just reglar manly species hatin' an stuff like that whazzit gonna be? Robots? Or Ponies?

    A week's only got so many half hours in it. A man's gotta have a budget.

  15. Renee Marie Jones says:

    I would not be so high and mighty about our "founding principles." One of the "founding principles" of our country is that a black man counts as 3/5 of a white man.

  16. Ken White says:

    @Renee:

    Some of our founders didn't particularly mean it — except, perhaps, for a very narrow definition of "all men"

    Reading is fundamental.

  17. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Radley Balko devoted a goodly portion of his time for years and saved a man's life:

    "Maye's case attracted little attention until late 2005, when Reason magazine senior editor and police misconduct researcher Radley Balko brought it to light on his blog The Agitator.[1] Balko's research raised several questions about Maye's conviction and in particular about the reliability of medical examiner Steven Hayne, who performed the autopsy on Jones and testified at the trial."

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cory_Maye

    Balko was greatly involved in the subsequent legal and advocacy efforts to get a fair shake for Maye, and he's a true hero for it – a word that gets misused disgracefully.

  18. Steven H. says:

    @Renee:

    " One of the "founding principles" of our country is that a black man counts as 3/5 of a white man."

    For purposes of apportioning Representatives to the House ONLY.
    For all other purposes, I expect the proportion was either 1.0 or 0.0, depending on the situation….

  19. Tarrou says:

    @ En Passant,

    Your point is well taken, but that only begs the question I asked earlier. Which lesser evils are we practicing on? My argument is as it was before, that living right is the best guard against injustice. And all the more powerful for being a lifestyle rather than a once-in-a-blue-moon thing.

    There's a great passage in the Screwtape Letters where the strategy for corrupting humans is to keep their lofty ideals focused far away, and all their meanness and spite focused on their family and neighbors. As long as the KKK is our focus rather than the guy across the road, we are failing to be useful.

    We all like to think of ourselves as the heroes of our own tales, but the world is not changed by heroes, but by millions and billions of people quietly doing the right thing.

  20. Lago says:

    If you would just drop the librul blinders from your eyes which have been clouded by the lamestream media in our feminized society you could read web sites like prideinourspecies.com and see that robots are objectively inferior.

    hoookay, had to look it up just to be sure it wasn't a real thing. can never be sure just how crazy people are.

  21. Dave Ruddell says:

    " One of the "founding principles" of our country is that a black man counts as 3/5 of a white man."

    Facepalm.

  22. Bill says:

    While we're at it, what if just for a small period of time, men stopped fighting each other and decided to uniformly fight things that threaten us all, cancer, errant asteroids, comets, starvation to name a few. I'm with you here Ken, it'd be a great start and as soon as I figure out something I can do, I'm game to adding some time each week to do my part. Any suggestions on what one can do would be greatly appreciated (I can certainly figure it out on my own, but I'm sure there would be some helpful thoughts from the crowd here at PH)

  23. Marconi Darwin says:

    Realistically, we'll probably just be racist against robots instead of people with different skin colors.

    If exclusively so, then we would have made remarkable progress.

  24. Craig says:

    If you can't find yourself some obvious injustice to resist, there are at least some other things you can do to make the world better.

    I used to be a medical research scientist; these days I work in preserving wilderness areas. Most areas where I work have volunteer "Bushcare" groups: local residents who spend a few hours per month pulling weeds out of nearby forests, doing erosion control work, revegetating disturbed sites, etc. I'd be surprised if there isn't something similar near you; even the most urbanised areas usually have residual pockets of native vegetation here and there.

    On my previous career: science saves lives on the grand scale. One of the most helpful things you can do to make the future better than it could be is to encourage scientific literacy. As a handy side effect, a scientific education also tends to provide an (imperfect) immunisation against hateful idiocy of the sort under discussion. Not everyone is cut out to personally do scientific research, but that doesn't mean you can't help.

    http://www.donorschoose.org/donors/search.html?subject4=6 is a good place to start. Five minutes and ten dollars can have a significant impact if put in the right place.

  25. Unimaginative says:

    You know, folks, it doesn't have to be an extravagantly-planned action. You don't need an iron-clad definition of evil. Just, next time somebody makes a racist or sexist or hurtful comment in your hearing, speak up instead of letting it slide. "Hey, that's not cool." That's it. It might even take less than half an hour.

  26. Lizard says:

    @Bill:If your standard is a great, unified, force of all humankind struggling mightily against some single foe, you're quite lucky — you'll never feel any impulse to actually do anything in the real world. Generally, the higher the standard required to "do good", the less the person promulgating the standard wants to run the risk of actually being asked to live up to it. Thus, for example, we have the leftists whose only real interest is being outrage sneering at anything that actually gives a little food to a few poor people, because doing so doesn't correct "the systematic injustices in our society", which are caused by [strike]being human[/strike] the patriarchy, and we have the rightists, who believe that getting a new 10,000 seat auditorium and multimedia center for their church, along with an Olympic sized indoor swimming pool for the pastor's 30 room mansion (all tax free, natch), is *exactly* what Jesus had in mind when he talked about charity.

    If I choose to adopt one kitten from a shelter, I have done nothing to seriously impact the lives of tends of millions of unwanted kittens in the country, nor have I altered the social, political, and economic factors that lead to masses of abandoned and unwanted animals. All I've done is made the life of one kitten less dreadful than it might have been. That's one more kitten than all those shrieking "underlying causes! Underlying causes!" as their excuse for doing nothing have managed to help. As far as that one kitten is concerned, I've done all that he could ask of me. (Except at food o'clock, twice a day, when he becomes rather demanding.)

    My wife devotes what little time and energy her multiple illnesses permit her to a small, one-woman (her) charity (501c registered and all that), that provides some small help to a small number of girls in Africa and Peru, and she also contributes what we can from our limited funds to three children she's "adopted" through World Vision. This an incredibly small thing compared to all the misery there is in the world, but, again — it is better than nothing.

    Also, @Renee: Whoever taught you history failed very badly. I recommend suing them.

  27. David C says:

    For those of you who cannot think of how to spend 30 minutes.. maybe donate an extra 30 minute's worth of pay to an organization that fights injustice, instead?

    "Fighting injustice" sounds good, but what is meant by it? Which injustice are we to fight? How do we determine what is injustice, and once that is done, how do we determine which of the millions of injustices to focus on? Will our actions have positive consequences, or are we just going to rail against those evil "other people" who have different opinions than we do?

    These are actually important questions. You DO need to consider this. If your donation of food to poor Africans is just going to get hijacked to supply a genocidal army, you may need to rethink whether you're actually doing good. But you can't let that stop you from trying to do ANYTHING.

  28. SIV says:

    " One of the "founding principles" of our country is that a black man counts as 3/5 of a white man."

    Facepalm.

    You're not wearing your librul blinders.

  29. En Passant says:

    Tarrou wrote Sep 15, 2013 @4:53 pm:

    Your point is well taken, but that only begs the question I asked earlier. Which lesser evils are we practicing on? My argument is as it was before, that living right is the best guard against injustice. And all the more powerful for being a lifestyle rather than a once-in-a-blue-moon thing.

    I think part of living right is a bit like the old Boy Scout thing, do a good turn daily or whenever you can. What you do depends on what you can do. Staying in practice is the important thing. I'm not perfect about it by any means, but I try to stay in practice.

    Staying connected to larger groups on the right path by helping on small things makes bigger results possible when you encounter a situation where you think they're needed. Because if nothing else, when you see some big outrage you can't do much about alone, you'll know who to call that can do something about it.

  30. Tarrou says:

    @ David,

    I'm certainly not suggesting nothing. In fact, what I suggest is far more and far more difficult than a half hour. I am against, generally speaking, programs which make people feel self-righteous without positively affecting anything. I am for small and (I hate to use the word) sustainable changes in human behavior that create better lives for the people they touch.

    One guy said he was going to counter-protest the EDL. Great. We can't march on Washington (or London) every day. And protests in general rarely accomplish anything positive. The EDL isn't going to win power in the next elections, and even if they did, they are what a muslim theologian might term the "far enemy". I argue that the time might be better spent apologizing to a wronged family member, shoveling an elderly neighbor's driveway, or taking a harried newcomer at work to lunch.

    Fulminating over the great injustices of an unjust world is a great way to feel good without improving your own corner of it. Now, I don't think that was Ken's meaning at all, the framing just seemed too dichotomous and simplistic.

  31. Tarrou says:

    @ En Passant,

    I find nothing there to disagree with. I'm not sure if we're arguing or not. :)

  32. AlphaCentauri says:

    Usually focusing on the big picture is important, but in this case it can be counterproductive if it makes you discouraged and makes you feel that your contribution is insignificant. And when you stop thinking of people as individuals, it even allows you to participate in the evils being perpetrated without feeling guilt. You have to save the world one day at a time, one person at a time. You have to realize that the good you do can be magnified by its effects on the other people in the lives of the person you helped.

    I would suggest starting very small, with a change in attitude. Look at all the people whose lives cross yours every day, and make an effort to think of them as people whose well-being you care about. Say hello to cashiers instead of treating them like vending machines. Nod a greeting to strangers on the street instead of walking by with your gaze averted. Watch for people who look lost and ask them if they need help. Smile when you wave other drivers to take a turn ahead of you. Make 21st century life more human for the people around you, even if you'll never see them again. They are very tiny gestures that cost you nothing. But civilization has changed in a lot of negative ways due to increased mobility and anonymity, and it will take conscious effort to try to reverse that trend. Someone has to start it.

  33. En Passant says:

    Tarrou wrote Sep 15, 2013 @7:44 pm:

    I'm not sure if we're arguing or not. :)

    I don't think so. As others have pointed out here, focusing on trying to find "the big important thing", or waiting for it to show up, can lead one to miss the little opportunities. I was only adding that routinely paying attention and addressing the little things can make the big thing easier to recognize when it appears, as well as more tractable to do something about.

    The main thing is paying attention. With good attention one will have a good handle on whether one's actions are actually helpful or not. Whether the world at large changes accordingly is not the measure. Whether the small piece of the world one addresses changes accordingly is the measure.

    G'night.

  34. barry says:

    Despite objections by such clear and important writer-scientists as Stephen J Gould, much of the world still thinks that 'race' is a valid scientific classification of the human species, rather than just a social, cultural and political classification.

    The idea of who is a racist is changing over time. And I am sure there will be a time (2063?) when a racist will be anyone who believes or acts as if there is a scientific basis for the term 'race' beyond statistics.

    In the meantime we must fight against the idea that 'gingers' (red headed people) constitute a 'race'. Sure you can spot one a mile off, and there is a genetic reason they look like that, and you mightn't want to be stuck on a long road trip with one. If you are faced with an official form with a space to fill in your race, the only correct answer is either 'none' or 'not known' (going back only 20 generations you have a million ancestors). Even if you are very proud of being a ginger, do not draw another square and label it 'ginger' and check that. That would be racist !

    Half an hour a day for a week is almost enough time to read the Wikipedia entry for race , including the talk page and checking the citations on both sides (if it does or doesn't exist) of the argument . ["Reading is fundamental."]

  35. Dion starfire says:

    I've spent at least 30 minutes this week reading and debating in the comments here. Does that count?

    (insert witty poke at Clark here)

  36. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Perhaps if one finds it too difficult to actively do good, one could at least knock off the tedious faux-sophisticated attitude that results in long-ish comments consisting of little more than "why bother?". That might be a baby-step in the right direction.

  37. Dan Weber says:

    I do worry about good deeds that end up hurting in the end, but it seems churlish to spend vast amounts of time on such a heartfelt post (by someone we know isn't a soft-headed do-gooder) telling other people they're doing it wrong.

    Solving the world's problems isn't easy. Improving just a few people's lives can be.

  38. Scott says:

    @Not the IT Dept.

    Plus (ferschissakes) 1!

  39. NS says:

    Lots of folks missing the point here in the comments… DER!!

    Good post Ken.

    There is not a lot that I can do (or perhaps anyone, as an individual) I'll grant you that, but that is no reason not to try.

    I vow to try to be less of a prick to people. This will not be easy. It will not have a profound impact on the world, but perhaps it will make the world, in some immeasurable, infinitesimal way, slightly less miserable.

    If I come up with any better ideas, I'll put them into play, but this is something I can do right now, which is better than sitting around thinking up excuses for why I do nothing…

  40. Lizard says:

    Someone has to start it.

    I'd like to add that the fact you can't be nice 24/7, that you will sometimes be surly to people who don't deserve it, because even though they had nothing to do with your problem, they're the ones you have to interact with, shouldn't be an excuse not to keep trying.

    I've got a thought of something more concrete I'd rather do it than discuss it, because discussing things always leads to "You shouldn't care about THAT, you should care about THIS!"

  41. Dirkmaster says:

    I strongly disagree with those who say you cannot fight injustice. We may not CONQUER injustice, but every time you

    Call Out wrong or evil deeds or actions
    Refuse to take part or support wrong headed ideas
    Help the Genuinely oppressed
    Service as an example of how to be a good person, even without religious pressure or motivation

    you serve to fight injustice by changing society, on little chip at a time. But that is how most change happens, IMHO.

  42. mud man says:

    Once you start a habit like fighting evil for 30 min./week it's probably like a gateway thing and pretty soon you'll be saving the world full time and not watering the lawn. Think of the ponies!

  43. melK says:

    Fun with selective interpretation corner:

    Some of our founders didn't particularly mean it … and since then many have rejected it, and continue to.

    Our Psychic Corps continues to sustain high turnover, due to the stress of dealing with obdurate founding fathers.

  44. Frank says:

    I'm not for or against this argument at all. In fact, I am for trying to solve injustices.

    With that being said, who decides what an injustice is? It's a matter of perception. An injustice to one person isn't necessarily an injustice to another. Injustice is a matter of perspective.

    I hate to use the Nazi analogy as much as the next guy, especially since I disagree with the Nazi philosophy, however, in their minds, they were doing the "right" thing. The rest of the world decided that they were doing a bad thing and acted accordingly. Even then, the rest of the world would have ignored what was going on had they not decided to attack the rest of Europe. Up until slavery was abolished in the United States, slavery was commonly accepted practice around the world. While I, personally, find slavery abhorrent, a Roman Senator would have not understood what the fuss was all about because that was normal and "correct" practice.

    If you're deciding what is "right" by the will of the majority, again I point back to the analogy of the Nazis in Germany.

    To steal, and paraphrase, a line from a movie, "What's right depends greatly on your point of view."

  45. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Well, Frank, here's a clue to get you started: mass-murder is always wrong and causing harm to other human beings is a very bad thing. There you go. Now take it from there.

  46. Frank says:

    @ Not the IT Dept

    Is causing harm to other human beings a very bad thing in every case? What about in the cases where someone has caused great harm to another individual or an entire society?

    Aside from that, who made you the arbiter of what's right and what's wrong? Where are the shades of grey? The little things (i.e. helping out Good Will) vs. the great things (i.e. curing AIDS and Cancer)? Do the needs of the many always outweigh the needs of the one or the few?

    Apparently you didn't grasp the entire concept of my post, which was who gets to decide what is right and what is wrong.

    The concept of right and wrong, by and large, varies based on many things. For instance, the Taliban believes it to be right and correct to stone a woman to death for infidelity after she has been raped. Most of the civilized world believes otherwise. That, does not obviate the fact that those in the Taliban still believe that it is the right and correct thing to do. Most of the civilized world believes, and rightly so, that marrying a 40 year old man to an 8 year old girl is abhorrent, yet there are cultures where this is fairly normal. Up until relatively recently, mostly because alot of them died out, cannibalism was considered normal and accepted practice.

    I am not supporting or condoning any of these practices. in fact, I am, personally, against them. That's not the point of my post though. The point of my post is *WHO* decides what's good and bad, right and wrong? For each of us that calibration is just a shade bit different based on our upbringing and culture, and even our own moral values.

  47. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Frank, there are some things not negotiable. If you haven't figured that out yet, then no amount of explanation will do for you.

  48. Fasolt says:

    The 30 minutes a week comment and the Nazi remarks in the comment section made me think that sometimes spending time with a like-minded group of people is helpful where that group has an overt anti-racist attitude or is intolerant of injustice. Particularly where that group is vocal about their beliefs.

    When I used to be heavily involved in the local music scene, I remember fondly the universal hatred of and scorn for the local neo-nazi knuckleheads. You would see them pop up at the punk shows or when the oi bands would come to town. They were easy to spot. They had the shaved heads, boots, and some would sport badly executed "white power" tattoos.

    They learned to travel in groups since they would be confronted if they were by themselves at the shows.

  49. ChrisTS says:

    Gods, some of these comments would disappoint me in a freshman philosophy class – on the first day.

    If you really believe there is nothing to morality beyond opinion, then decide what you think is unjust and fight it.

    If you are capable of reasoning, work out what is unjust, which injustices are 'worst,' and which you want to fight.

  50. George William Herbert says:

    Not the IT Dept. writes:
    Frank, there are some things not negotiable. If you haven't figured that out yet, then no amount of explanation will do for you.

    Let me pose two questions:

    One, say negotiations break down, and Syria uses chemical weapons again against its rebels. The only way to stop them is to slaughter enough of the government forces that they stop that, with a bombing campaign. Even in the service of preventing more mass murder and war crimes, the bombing campaign will kill a lot of people, including a lot of civilians.

    Two, say that the Taliban stoning rape victims to death is horrible enough that we need to stop it, right away. The belief is sufficiently deeply held by many Pashtun that the only way to do that is to kill off a significant fraction of the Pashto males, all the Taliban and then some. Is it better to decimate the Pashtun regions of Afghanistan in this manner, or accept that we can't save all the rape victims until we change the way the world works there?

    It's not a question of negotiation. It's that some non-negotiable things require other non-negotiable things to enact.

  51. Not the IT Dept. says:

    I reject your premise that using a military solution is the "only" way to solve things. That kind of thinking gets us into more trouble every decade.

    1. Regarding Assad: I would concentrate on going after the bank accounts of Assad and his government colleagues. You can bet they're not banking at the downtown branch of Damascus Credit and Loan, and they're probably pretty familiar with Swiss passport stamps. So I would get together with European governments and the heads of major international banks – all of whom are involved in what less respectful types call money laundering – and make arrangements to put the squeeze on the real lifeblood of dictatorships worldwide: the money. It would take a fair amount of persuading and we'd have to make the supreme effort to treat other governments politely, but I'm sure we could do it if we tried.

    2. Sadly, stoning people to death – mostly but not always women – is a cultural reality in the Middle East. Change has to come from within on that one, even if that means we don't get to play super-hero and charge in with guns blazing. Also we might want to check out how often our allies like Saudi Arabia do the same thing without it keeping us awake at night.

    Basically: I reject your underlying assumptions that threatening other countries with violence will work either in the short or long term. I kind of think we should have figured that out by now. People don't like to be threatened, and tend to get their backs up about it. Neither of your solutions would work.

  52. Rich Rostrom says:

    Frank • Sep 16, 2013 @12:09 pm:Up until slavery was abolished in the United States, slavery was commonly accepted practice around the world.

    The U.S. was one of the last countries in the world to abolish chattel slavery. Slavery had already been abolished throughout Europe, Russia, the French and British colonies, India, Latin America except Brazil and the Spanish colonies, and most of the United States.

  53. It's melancholy to think so, but maybe we've already seen the zenith of racial harmony, and the world of 2063 will be worse than now, or even worse than 1963.

  54. Tarrou says:

    I suspect you are correct, Inspector. Tribalism is too powerful a force to be ignored.

    However, there is hope. The one thing that can bind disparate groups together is a serious threat from an outside group. Only tribalism can beat tribalism. In terms of the Civil Rights Movement, I think we can safely lay the psychological basis of the whole thing at the feet of decades of continuous war (WW2, Korea, Vietnam, the cold war in general). When nations turn inward, they focus on the differences between themselves. When they turn outward, those differences get mitigated. The best thing that could happen for racial harmony in America is a nice long war (horrible in its own right, but there you have it).