Again I agree with author TO. It is unequivocally wrong to walk into an unlocked house and steal stuff or vandalise. Just because the house is unlocked, that does not make the inhabitants deserve to be stolen from or to have their privacy invaded and possessions damaged. To blame those inhabitants for the damage done by thieves is to assert the barbaric doctrine that vulnerability is culpability.

OTOH, it is reasonable to be aware that there are bad actors in the world and hence to take reasonable precautions. What is “reasonable” in a civilised society is the terrain of our debate, and the advance of barbaric values is demonstrated daily. When a sitting POTUS can claim that the reasonable response to armed assault on a place of worship is to install armed guards in every place of worship, barbarism is being preached aloud.

There is an old saying that epitomises good government and public order: a virgin girl carrying a bag of gold could walk safely from one end of the city to another. In other words, where there is good government, public order, and an intact social contract, people do not immediately take advantage of vulnerability. In a functioning society, cooperation is elevated above predation, and only a criminal minority are predators. In a failed state, predation is is elevated above cooperation and the social contract shatters into everyone for himself and devil take the hindmost.

When we look at the way news is presented, the way people respond to narratives from around the world, consider always the dogma of barbarism. When we can’t understand how people can applaud putting little children in jail, just remember: if you believe that vulnerability is culpability, then little poor children deserve to be jailed. Because they are the most vulnerable. And if the people applauding call themselves Christians, they need to be reminded of the verse in which Jesus said “Even as ye have done unto the least of these…” — the radical doctrine that vulnerability deserves our care and generosity, that unlocked houses should be respected, if anything, even more than locked ones, that opportunistic predation is neither moral not practical as a social ethic.

Retired; ex-software engineer. Paleo-feminist. Sailor. Arduino tinkerer. Enviro. Libertarian Socialist (Anarcho-Syndicalist, kinda). Writer. Altermondialiste.

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