What are individuals to do when faced with a moral imperative? And society at large? Philosophers since ancient times have been wrestling with this question as it involves issues of ethics and conscience. When we see an injustice do we remain passive and silent or do we intervene to try and stop it. Is it our problem or someone else’s? Powerful states and institutions like to cloak themselves in morality and virtue. Citizens are propagandized to let the big boys, since they know what’s best, handle everything. Do we act on our principles? What are our responsibilities? Racial segregation was an obvious immorality. Why did it take so long for it to be eliminated? Same with voting rights. Today the old poisonous wines are being repackaged in new bottles. Once again we are faced with moral imperatives.
Chris Hedges is an award-winning journalist who has covered wars in the Balkans, the Middle East and Central America. He writes a weekly column for Truthdig.com and is a senior fellow at The Nation Institute. He is the author of many books including Empire of Illusion, Death of the Liberal Class, The World As It Is, and Wages of Rebellion.