Herbert Spencer: Every man is free to do that which he wills, provided he infringes not the equal freedom of any other man.~ Herbert Spencer, The Ethics of Social Life: Justice
Seems to me that our age in history fails to consider that too much “individual” freedom leads to oppression of weaker individuals and groups of a society. Ironically the call for freedom and individualism tends to feed elitist attitudes of “difference”. Taken to the extreme this feeds ultimately a phase of conflict, fear and hate. Once this conflict begins it festers into a sore that inbreeds within the society which in turn becomes ripe for groups to rally and seek correction in the name of patriotism and nationalism; to call for a restoration of past histories, traditions and status. In short, it may support fascism. We should strive for “group” freedom which means individual desires may not be realized if costs are to high in terms of societal survival and the social well-being.
After several readings over several days I just knocked out an intriguing peer review of a proposed journal article today. It involves the Jewish perspective of criminology and the use of religion as part of an overall therapy technique by which imprisoned Offenders, that wish to, may transform their identity employing religion. This is central to my own research.
While the article was highly theological (not a bad thing) and focused on Judaism I believe it offers much to consider by way of criminology. To the merit of the authors they propose that the focus on Judaism as a treatment for change is not unilateral, but only by example. Inclusively, from a secular and social perspective, traditional religions generically may be employed as both a social process and social structural means of support for pro social change in identity.
I look forward to the publication of this article.
First, I am not downplaying anything in regards to the wanton taking of another’s life. However, why isn’t the Zurich, Switzerland attack on a mosque getting the same news coverage as Berlin, Ankara or even Syria? Granted these are three different kinds of killings.
The Ankara, Turkey assassination of the Russian Ambassador was political assassination. The Syrian situation clearly has elements of “war crime” which are similar to the indiscriminate and criminal tactics of the regime of Israel against the children, women, and aging of Gaza. Yet Israel remains unscathed by news reporting on these atrocities. Berlin distinctively appears terroristic, but then again so does the lone shooter that entered the Zurich mosque filled with worshippers. No media I have thus far predicted the religion, if any, of the Zurich shooter. Perhaps until they can safely report that the shooter was “Islamic looking” they will not give this event much coverage. This leaves me looking for a thread by which to seek to understand these reporting strategies.
Voice, self expression and playing an active role is critical in reforming and transforming criminality as an identity. In my study with Prisoner Narratives I used the word ‘inmate’ because IRB insisted in the sterilized term. As I began with each interview I used the word inmate to refer to their status. All but one expressed the desire to be called ‘prisoner’ rather than inmate. I believe in giving marginalized populations ‘voice’. http://mynorthwest.com/444658/doc-convicted-criminals-should-no-longer-be-called-offenders/
If only this message would sink in ‘universally’..if only all people would question their governments’ position on nationalism, politics and othering. https://youtu.be/IaHrQoJyXXg