Personal Ethics

Another passage from Lest Innocent Blood Be Shed:

Ethics, especially the ethics of crisis, of life and death, deals with the lives and deaths of particular humans beings. . . . Life-and-death ethics has to do with hurting and helping individual human beings. It has to do with betraying, torturing, humiliating, killing them, and with helping them.

Too much of ethics deals with humans as objects rather than as human beings. We eliminate the human camaraderie shared between people when we do this. We eliminate the image of God in each person when we view ethics as a big, abstract system of beliefs rather than concrete, tangible acts we make each and every day. Ethics is lived, and only after it is lived, can it be speculated upon. Our ethics, especially when dealing with humans, must always allow space for that shared humanity to shape and mold the decisions we make.

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