April 4, 2006
The Godfather, anyone?
Have been contemplating this for a couple of days, and can't get round a solution yet.
A hypothetical situation for you to think about:
Picture a society you live in that is dominated by a Mafia group. (It is not too difficult to imagine this, as many countries are ridden with similar situations: the original nation of the Godfather, Yakuza, the Triads and so on.)
The Mafia continually extorts money from all around you. Because they are so powerful, everyone kowtows to them. Security money is taken away, pocketed for their personal gains, and all alike know this. You are helpless, just watch from afar and silently curse and swear at their lack of compassion and justice. There are some people who attempt to soften their blows by promoting real justice, so they form a small anti-Mafia group, but this does not avail to much as its members get injured, or lured into the Mafia itself.
One day, a friend of yours admits to you that he is part of the Mafia. You think this is an incredulous notion. This is a betrayal of beliefs. How can he readily subscribe to extortion, corruption, greed and violence?
His answer is, this is the only way to rob Peter to pay Paul. Why fight a futile battle from the outside when it works effectively from within? Sacrifice a bit of your idealistic principles and get down to real-life working for the better, he claims.
Is the sacrifice principally wrong? If so, what is the alternative, if fighting a looming Mafia group is a losing battle in itself?
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