Sunday, September 18, 2005

Fear Guides Justice

What keeps a person from going out and doing harm to their enemies is the fear of consequences that society has placed on such actions. Fear is an element that can over rule a persons desire because it What keeps a person from going out and doing harm to their enemies is the fear of consequences that society has placed on such actions. Fear is an element that can over rule a persons desire because it can be reasoned as having stronger consequences. can be reasoned as having stronger consequences.
If a child desires candy from the store but has no money there is no defined barrier that the child can see to tell them not to take the candy. They desire it and therefore why not take it? However their parents (society) has given them a mental guidebook to abide by that tells them not to steal. Because if one steals there will be a consequence that is worst than any pleasure that candy can cause. This example of a consequence is situational, however desires can be suppressed by thinking about the consequences.
Freedom is a large desire that all people intuitively have. Our society has created a consequence for those who cannot reason through desire, or would rather face the consequences that suppress that desire. Jail is a large consequence that society has created. And for those individuals who desire too much the death penalty has also been instituted.
However, there are loopholes in the societal guidebook, deemed the law, which people can turn too. Similar to the ring of Gyges from The Republic of Plato there are ways in which people believe that that are immune to the consequences. First of which, is the ideology that they cannot be detected and therefore made responsible. To have escaped from consequences and fulfilled their desire would be the ultimate. However society has also created barriers toward this type of behavior. The church as a baseline for all consequences created the idea of ethics and the afterlife, if you break the laws of the church you get sent to hell. This consequence is the result of being ethically wrong in your actions. To be ethically wrong in fulfilling ones desire makes the desire itself null. Because no matter what one does they are always feeling ethically wrong.
There are also different levels of consequences. There are government levels as well. Those who have a powerful political position or multitudes of money can be exempt from governmental consequences. By bending the law through politics and wealth one can obtain any desire that one wants and feel no consequences. This however, is based on only the governmental level. When taking into consideration the ethical level of consequences one has to rely on personal responsibility. Socrates believes that personal responsibility cannot be relied on. This is very true, because in any situation a person can dismiss their action as null. It is more difficult to pass of a cities idea of ethics and consequences. That is why Socrates uses a larger population for his discussion in book two.

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