On ‘eliminating stigma’ and Social Justice Warriors

I’m in the motherland of SJW’s (Social Justice Warriors), in other words, an American Jesuit Institution. The tractable 18-year-olds are full of righteous indignation and idealistic self-importance of the messianic variety. (And of course, inevitably, the few contrarian ones now mutter about Ayn Rand and Breitbart).

Seriously though, the SJW-ness is thick enough in the air here I could probably bottle it up and sell it as a new breakfast spread for your toast.

I ran across this thought in an old Jesuits book of rambling essays:

We also hope its new-found “compassion” is not so self-righteous that it excludes the poor and weak from their own moral dignity on the grounds of some neo-Rousseauist theory about sinful structures or social sin, which insists on locating evil outside of most human hearts. We are very near to reducing most people to “objects” of “concern” — or to put it differently, we are very near to handing over the essential decisions about moral worth… [James V. Schall Idylls and Rambles, p. 205]

I think he is saying, that the more you champion “the oppressed” and insist they are not responsible for their actions, the more you objectify them into ‘things’. Sometimes, holding someone accountable for their actions is the first step in respecting them as a human being.

Dogs with rabies get my pity and a swift euthanization. If we treat people like “the poor things can’t help it”, then the logic follows there as well.

Let us not treat sinning humans as faultless critters. That is dehumanizing.


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