I was reading one of Mark Roberts’ blog on looting, titled: Am I As Bad as the Looters?
And I was struck by the opening of the second paragraph I have listed here.
In general, we humans tend to minimize our own wrongdoing. Sometimes we do this by rationalizing it. Sometimes we do this by blaming others. Sometimes we do this by accentuating the sins of others so that we come out looking pretty good by comparison. This last case is the one that can catch us as we become angry over video clips of looting along the Gulf Coast.
“But,” you say, “I haven’t looted. I haven’t stolen anything from anyone.” Good, that’s the way it should be. But, before you become too self-satisfied, you might ask yourself: “Have I ever copied software onto my computer that I didn’t purchase? Have I ever taken possession of tapes, CDs, or MP3s of copyrighted music for which I had no intention of paying? Have I ever intentionally understated my income on my tax returns? Have I ever “borrowed” supplies from work without giving them back?” If you can answer “yes” to any of these questions, then you have stolen. Your actions weren’t caught on video and played for the world, of course. But, morally speaking, robbery is robbery. Are you really so innocent? Am I?
Even if you can answer “no” to all of the questions above, and I know many people who truly don’t steal, you might find other kinds of sin more to your liking. Like pride, perhaps. Or judgmentalism. Or a lack of compassion for the poor. Or . . . you name it. Would you really want the contents of your heart displayed on the six o’clock news? I know I wouldn’t.