Sunday, December 28, 2008

"Trite Drivel"

A reader posted a comment on the post about “Baby P”, which I feel the need to respond to. My posted reaction of “near psychopathic rage” at his treatment was dismissed as “trite drivel” in light of, as the comment continued, the massive loss of life in Iraq caused by the Bush regimes illegal war and occupation, the implication being that it was pretentious and dishonest to feel so strongly about the incident involving the child, when I should more properly be anguished and remorseful about the events in Iraq, involving as it does my country and its government. (Missing from the comment was the very large contribution his own country, the UK, made in going to war with, and occupying, Iraq.) To attempt to link the two events in a sort of “moral outrage contest” is inappropriate; both richly deserve all the condemnation imaginable. What is objectionable is the subtle attempt to attribute a sense of responsibility for the one action, Iraq, bemoaning a percieved lack of moral outrage over the horrors there, while simultaneously reducing honest empathy for the child, “Baby P”, to “trite drivel”. Using this argument, the fact that the reader is from the UK, where the “Baby P” incident occurred, would suggest that he should feel a far greater sense of outrage than I. Ridiculous.

There is certainly enough evil in both situations to elicit moral outrage; to minimize anyone’s reaction to either is simply “trite drivel”...

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