Morality - By David Hakim

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MORALITY

 

As the President of the Scottish Rite Club of Oakland, I recently had the privilege of arranging and listening to a speech by Professor Karen Miller, Chairperson of the Department of History, Oakland University.   Her speech was entitled and described as follows:

 

“Finding Purpose in American Foreign Policy:  the Moral Dilemma of post-Cold War International Relations:  For more than a generation, American foreign policy had been built on the moral premise that the containment of the Soviet Union was a necessary pre-requisite to global peace.  This meant that most of our energy was expended in understanding the communist threat as a manifestation of Russian expansionism.  All policy decisions ultimately led to the objective of curtailing Soviet strength.  With the sudden dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the United States government momentarily lost the means to determine its foreign policy objectives.  As a result, American foreign policy has become much more tightly linked to the individual goals of the president and less a reflection of a larger consensus of the American people.  Ultimately, this makes it easier for Congress and the general public to disassociate from major foreign policy initiatives.”

 

Dr. Miller explained that the United States was the sole remaining superpower capable of directing international foreign policy. In fact, President Bill Clinton strove to achieve international consensus on goals, such as elimination of warfare, prevention of genocide and elimination of world starvation.  Sometimes the president believed he had to achieve these goal covertly, because many in our nation believe that “might makes right” and felt that after going through the cold war successfully, we ought to unilaterally make the world “safe for democracy.” However, Dr. Miller states that President Clinton occasionally used covert techniques to by-pass opposition.  He tended to vacillate in his commitment in an effort to search for a consensus with neo-conservatives and advocates of realpolitik.  In both the Balkans and Somalia he wavered in his commitment to use force for nation building.  In Afghanistan and Iraq he vacillated between a policy of accommodation and military strikes.

 

President Bush and others were so traumatically affected by 9/11 that to some degree their sense of proportion was distorted and they got carried away by the atrocity.

President George W. Bush enthusiastically endorsed the unilateral belief that the U.S. has the right and duty to provide leadership in the world.  He almost unilaterally sent troops to Iraq to take over the nation, depose Saddam Hussein and aid the inhabitants of Iraq in establishing a democracy.  He did this despite a great deal of hostility from our traditional foreign partners like France, Germany and Canada.  He said that the U.S. desired to assist the inhabitants of Iraq in obtaining their desire for a democracy.  However, Dr. Miller explained that such actions were actually against the will of the Iraqi nation.

 

According to the polls, most Americans want us to end our activities in Iraq.  We do not want to continue to be involved in a civil war in which participants are willing to commit suicide in their desire to kill whom they believe to be the enemy, including our troops.

 

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In continuing this paper, I acknowledge that I have already written on morality in “Bias Hate Crimes” and “Fairness” as links in this website, www.davidhakim.com.  Displaced aggression, as discussed in my link, “Capital Punishment,” causes one to portray poor behavior and hatred toward others.  These are generally learned behaviors that are sometimes continued from lifetimes as also is true love.  Many would rather die than treat others unfairly, and generally it is through emotion that negative feelings are displayed toward others.

 

I have taken many courses from Francisco Coll, founder of the Americana Leadership College, and his associates, and many times have heard the following:  “There is no right or wrong, no good or evil, just self respect and respect of others.”

 

The Bible, Genesis 2:16-17 (New International) states:  “And the Lord commanded the man, ‘You are free to eat from any tree in the garden, but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.’”  Could this mean that man has created the concept of good and evil, without which love would more easily exist throughout the world?  Was original sin created because of man’s loss of innocence?  Most religions acknowledge the presence of good and evil, but don’t their various definitions of good and evil actually result in negative practices of man against man which result in much bloodshed?

 

Other sayings of Francisco and his followers are:  “You are what you think, not what you think you are” (see my links on “Secret” and “Enjoy”), “Be a peace lover, not a peace maker,” “Live and let live” and “Do not judge another, because you may find yourself judging yourself twice as hard.”

 

One’s environment, especially what one learned from his/her parents, largely dictates whether one practices these behaviors.  Of course, it is possible to overcome past training and practices, and if enough people world wide were able to practice the above, true love would prevail.  

 

In my link, “Israeli Palestinian,” I gave a solution of the Israeli Palestinian crisis:  Divide the land in separate nation states.  I also showed my displeasure of going to war against Iraq, especially since I have relatives living there.  I believe that attempts are being made to achieve peace in the Middle East that will soon bear fruit, and but for certain mistakes of fact and judgment we would not have gone to war with Iraq.

 

                                                            David C. Hakim

                                                            Rochester, Michigan

                                                            May 31 – June 6, 2007