Fun_People Archive
4 May
Oklahoma Bombing & Very Local Opinion

Date: Thu,  4 May 95 19:21:10 PDT
From: Peter Langston <psl>
To: Fun_People
Subject: Oklahoma Bombing & Very Local Opinion

    After reading the previous item ("Oklahoma Bombing & World Opinion")
and feeling I'd gotten, by osmosis, a little more distance on the whole
event, I started to think I might have an inkling of why I find it so
hard to get in perspective.  But then again, maybe I'm just glazed by
all the scrolling text.  If you managed to read the entire World Opinion
posting then you're probably glazed enough to make sense of my take on
it all...
    Of the various possible reasons for breaking the law, I can imagine
an ordering that has simple greed at one end, survival at the other,
and expressions of principle or conscience somewhere in the middle.  I
can also imagine another ordering based solely on the amount of damage
done.  By either of these measures, corporate criminals like the tobacco
companies come out so much worse than the Oklahoma bombers (greed vs.
protest, many thousands every year vs. 200 once) that my puny little
capacity for understanding horror just doesn't have the range to focus
on both at once, let alone trying to fit the petty (yet strangely
earth-shaking) personal tragedies of everyday life onto the same scale.
But perhaps I'm using the wrong graph paper ... how do you take the log
of greed?

[=] © 1995 Peter Langston []