No, this is not a to do list. I am not lining up for some nefarious deeds in the near future. Maybe the not so near future… ? Nah, silly me. I see these three words as my guide for conduct. I will endeavour to not do anything illegal, immoral or unethical. The legal issue is pretty straightforward. Laws are written down and enforced. It is a way of making groups of people behave. Common sense should be a part of that but we all know how that works. The tricky bit comes when you’re dealing with issues of morality and ethics.
Ethics are something that is dictated by society or specific cultures. Morality is our internalization of that and how we respond to said society. Unfortunately, both seem to have the ability to waiver and re-create themselves depending on the time of day and the weather forecast. Do I sound a wee bit sarcastic?
If you could travel back in time, you would find some differences in the laws used to govern society. The basics were all the same: killing bad, theft frowned upon, fraud, assault and so on. But there were other laws in which, as we have evolved, we saw the inequalities in society and have endeavoured to correct them. We also made a point of putting these laws in writing which allows us to enforce them. We still have a ways to go.
Ethics have also changed over time and that is not a bad thing. They are not stagnant and should grow as we grow. But why does it seem as if every politician, every dictator, every person in authority seems to make it their goal to change ethics to accommodate their platform? The whole concept of morality and ethics should be there for the benefit of all. Globally, locally and individually. You know the whole idea of ‘doing unto others as you would have them do onto you’? Why do people forget that? You do not want to be cheated out of your life savings? So why do some people think it’s OK to do it to others? Yes, I am we bit naïve. I like to believe in the good of people. I like to . . .
So, I will give other people the benefit of the doubt until they prove me wrong. They so often do. And I’m going to try to live my life according to my principles: nothing illegal, immoral or unethical. Well, I said I would try!