It seems to me, to paraphrase Alexander Solzhenitsyn, no one has the right to silence another. Now, I have not read The Gulag Archipelago, I have only read excerpts and watched videos about it, so please forgive me if my arguments supporting his philosophy mirror his. It is important to understand both the negative effects of the arrogant attitude, that one has the right to silence another, as well as the logical fallacy underlying the notion. To believe that is to be a hypocrite… because no one wants to be silenced themselves. Moreover, the same attitude underlays most of the greatest sins against humanity and God. Many may ignorantly accept such pernicious and destructive notions… and doing so only creates more evil in the world. So, if we want a world with as little evil in it as possible, we must strive to expunge all hypocritical concepts.
All sins are based in hypocrisy, which is the antithesis of the Golden Rule. The very understanding of the term “hypocrisy” requires as a prerequisite… empathy. Every major religion but one, for example, has as a basic tenet that rape is evil. Yet, even those who loudly claim rape is perfectly acceptable, would never want to be raped themselves! Even as they pretend rape of another is acceptable. Slavery is another example of a mortal sin couched as good, because how many people who advocate slavery as not evil, would want to be enslaved? How many of those despicable subhumans, who own slaves or enslave others, would say that their own slavery is acceptable? Murder is another example, how many who feel justified killing someone for whatever reason, would claim that they themselves should be murdered, for the same reason? The list of examples of the hypocrisy of such acts is endless. To silence another is just such a hypocritical sin.
Obviously, or maybe not so obviously, just because someone has the power to silence another, does not make it moral or just. A man has the power to rape a woman, a woman has the power to kill a man, everyone has the ability to steal and there is not one among us who cannot lie… but does that power make it right? Of course not! That we have the ability, and do not do evil, is proof of civilization in us. True goodness is not the lack of evil in a man’s heart, true good is having that evil and also the will NOT to do evil. It is not good to be powerless to do evil, because we are all capable of bad acts, especially those who pretend to be harmless. Those who wield the power of the state, have the full force of the nation at their disposal, to silence dissenters and other political views. Those leaders, who have the power to silence others, but do not, are good, and those who use power to silence others then, are evil.
Hsun Ching said, The congenital nature of Man is evil and the goodness in us is a learned trait. Our parents provide for our needs, and one of the most important, is the need to be civilized. We are born selfish, it is only through our interaction with our family that we learn to control ourselves, our family teaches us empathy, which leads to the understanding of hypocrisy. Those who haven’t been civilized are horrible to be around. Think of a brat. No one wants a brat in their home, no one makes friends with someone who is out of control, and those poor souls who have been poorly served by their parents by not being civilized become bad people. It s not their fault, the evil in them was not overcome by their parents. Yet those uncivilized among us would have us all believe they have the right to silence others. To that end, we are deluged with logical fallacies, like the notion some should be silenced for the good of the many.
That anyone claims the right to silence another is pure hypocrisy. What rapist wants to be raped, what murderer wants to be murdered and what censor seeks her own words censored? No, those prescriptions are for others, never the hypocrite engaged in them. Having the power to do a thing does not make it right or just, in fact, having the power to do evil, and not, is the definition of good. Since the nature of mankind is evil, and the good in us a learned trait, we are all subject to believing in self serving hypocrisies, like slavery, rape, stealing, lying, murder and censorship. Solzhenitsyn lived a life of oppression and terror at the hands of self serving uncivilized people, bereft of morality and empathy, who justified their lack of human compassion by claiming the “right,” to not only silence others but execute anyone who stood in their way, for the “good” of the many. Clearly such an attitude is in and of itself, self serving, and can only lead to evil. So, if we seek a world filled with evil actors, then accepting hypocrisy is a sure path to it, but if we seek a world of peace, love, prosperity and compassion, we must reject those who play word games to justify their evil deeds. It is as simple as that. As John Bradford said, “There before the grace of God go I…”