So as everyone knows, I started taking an Ethics class two weeks ago. Before that, I just pondered on things either on here or in my own head. It’s been getting louder and louder the more I think about it, so I’m going to try to paste together a good enough argument, or at least a good explanation.
I’ve been noticing(alot) that many people who claim that their group, religion, or race is the most moral tend to be the most immoral people. When I mean immoral, I mean in the normative sense not descriptive. Because according to the normative moraltiy, an action being right or wrong is based on what a very moral person would do. Descriptive is more or less based on what that person’s idea of right and wrong is. To remember, think of descriptive as a laundry list of do’s and don’ts that a person from a various culture or group has to follow to be “in the group”.
Now that I’ve given some help in that idea, I’ll go on. So, I’m not saying that all white people are immoral(yes, someone actually told me that white people are the most moral of the races. Ugh). But I am more focused on a religious group or sect than anything.
Over the past six months, I’ve had to hear, see, and read various Christians state how that a person could not be completely moral without accepting Christ as their savior. Some even went on to state that Christians were more moral than non-believers. This of course, pissed me the frack off.
I’ll start with the main reason why it angers me. To base a religion on “Do this, and you’re golden, but if you screw up ONCE, you’re going to a place of hellfire and worms will rape you for all eternity.” seems a bit wrong. It’s akin to taking a child who stole a cooking and throwing them in a 450 degree oven. The child stole a danged cookie. You spank them, you do not throw them into a hot oven so they can’t even LEARN from the mistake.
But it gets worse. We have people in this religion who then say things like “If I didn’t go to hell for what I wanted to do, I would have done it.” I’m sorry, what? So let me get this right. You desire to do a possibly very very bad behavior(like murder a boring ex-husband), yet it is only because you fear hell/are a Christian you are not doing it? Pardon me, but that is not only morally reprehensible, but disgusting. You don’t murder the ex-husband because it is WRONG, not because you’d be thrown into hell. You don’t throw your family out on the street because you fear what god would say. You do it because it is the right thing to do. Period.
And I understand that some are just saying it out of frustration, but seriously. Some religious people actually think that if they did not have that external locus of control in the form of religious law and minister’s admonitions, they would be just heathens bound for hell.
But I disagree. To depend on that external locus of control is tempting. But it weakens you. When you are faced with a major problem, if you did not take the locus of control and place it in your own danged hands, you’ll fail miserably. I know I might just have confused someone when I said locus of control, so I’ll explain. Locus of Control is based on how a person sees the world, or themselves. A person with strong internal locus of control, believes a majority of the things that happen to them, are because of their own actions. Those with a high external locus of control believes that things happen to them because of external forces(Demons,fate,Joe pesci). These are folks who tend to blame others for their actions. The reigning train of thought is ” no one told me not to” or ” they didn’t stop me”.
In other words, actions are done to them. At it’s extreme, it’s a constant stream of victim speak.
So yeah I get s little twitchy when someone says that god changed their behavior. Because he/she did not bend down and force you to change.
You changed yourself. For better or worse I dunno, but you did the legwork. So own up to it.