Saturday, June 5, 2010

When corruption is the norm

When corruption is the norm then the world is truly in trouble. I am not saying that throughout all of our society that this is so, but in certain areas we are getting close. The latest is the expanding case of government officials offering politicians jobs illegally and after being caught responding, "Well, everyone does it."

The response is not the problem. In fact it is no different than when the child tells his/her parent that, "Everyone is doing it, what's the problem." Of course we all know the typical parent response..."so if Johnny jumps off the Empire State Building, then you should to?!" I view the "everyone does it" excuse at the same level of the rapist who says, "If she didn't want to be raped, then she shouldn't dress that way." In other words the person is trying to take the focus off himself and put it on everyone else. But let's face it, it is an absurd excuse and should be labeled as such.

The problem today is that corruption is becoming so much the norm in politics that people are actually supporting the "everybody does it" excuse. And it is spreading to other areas.

Not very long ago if someone used that type of excuse for illegal or unethical behavior they would be called to task for it. But today, people are actually buying the excuse...which in my mind is quite scary.

Honesty and truth should be our norm. And when people do not abide by it, then we should call them on it. But more and more we don't. And we see more and more of the excuse that "everyone does it." Soon we may see a time when honesty and truth are no longer the standard that we live up to, but the exception.

In fact I believe that when corruption becomes the norm then honesty will be viewed as a threat to the corrupt. And then the honest must be vilified. And where will we be then?