Moral relativism

In these days of liberals attacking Jesusland, and advocating moral relativism with its no right and wrong philosophy, I always hark back to the words of Barbra Streisand. Yes, for real. Actually, they were the words of Neil Simon, spoken by Barbra, in the 1970 comedy movie The Owl and The Pussycat. Streisand played a prostitute who eventually marries. In a scene with her new boyfriend, she explains how she overcame her guilt feelings about being a prostitute by visiting a psychologist. The psychologist told her that her guilt was just a leftover bourgeois emotion, a tired and outdated concept that she shouldn't believe in. She felt so good about her session that she stopped payment on the check to the good doctor! Apparently her character understood logical implications and conclusions of philosophies better than the shrink did.

We should ask  the with it, anti—establishment college professors, who believe there is no right and wrong, what would happen if the payroll clerks and computer programmers at their university absconded with the instructors' salaries, and all of their payroll checks bounced. Or, if there is no right and wrong, what would happen if the maintenance crew were to steal the college's brass and copper plumbing and buy drugs with the money gotten for selling the pipes? Apparently what the professors really mean is that only the privileged youngsters in the classroom — and the professor — can entertain the idea (illusion is more accurate) that one can advocate we should be in a society with no "old fashioned" moral standards. I wonder if the professors saying this owned any Enron stock.

One writer I know, Dennis Prager, used to end his television show by saying that anyone who thinks religion has no place in the modern world should ask themselves, "who would you rather meet on a dark street at night? A group of young men who came from a meeting saying the world is no good and no one gets a fair chance at things; or young men who just came from a Bible study class?" In fact, a few years after this was said, an unemployed computer programmer tried to start a firebomb in a New York subway (after writing blackmail letters to the City). He was stopped by a young black man who was coming home on the subway from a Bible study class.

You see, if we are all God, as Shirley McLaine and others have said, and no one's (or the Bible's) morality is worth anything, then the only thing stopping me from beating up an old lady on her way to deposit her Social Security check on the first of the month is the strength of my legs or the speed of my car to get away from the scene before any police arrive. This is not the interpretation most readers here would make from such a pro—moral relativism hypothetical argument, but it IS the interpretation a lot of cocky 18 year olds would make, particularly young males, who already act like they're God.

Jack Kemp is a frequent contributor. He is not a former politician.

In these days of liberals attacking Jesusland, and advocating moral relativism with its no right and wrong philosophy, I always hark back to the words of Barbra Streisand. Yes, for real. Actually, they were the words of Neil Simon, spoken by Barbra, in the 1970 comedy movie The Owl and The Pussycat. Streisand played a prostitute who eventually marries. In a scene with her new boyfriend, she explains how she overcame her guilt feelings about being a prostitute by visiting a psychologist. The psychologist told her that her guilt was just a leftover bourgeois emotion, a tired and outdated concept that she shouldn't believe in. She felt so good about her session that she stopped payment on the check to the good doctor! Apparently her character understood logical implications and conclusions of philosophies better than the shrink did.

We should ask  the with it, anti—establishment college professors, who believe there is no right and wrong, what would happen if the payroll clerks and computer programmers at their university absconded with the instructors' salaries, and all of their payroll checks bounced. Or, if there is no right and wrong, what would happen if the maintenance crew were to steal the college's brass and copper plumbing and buy drugs with the money gotten for selling the pipes? Apparently what the professors really mean is that only the privileged youngsters in the classroom — and the professor — can entertain the idea (illusion is more accurate) that one can advocate we should be in a society with no "old fashioned" moral standards. I wonder if the professors saying this owned any Enron stock.

One writer I know, Dennis Prager, used to end his television show by saying that anyone who thinks religion has no place in the modern world should ask themselves, "who would you rather meet on a dark street at night? A group of young men who came from a meeting saying the world is no good and no one gets a fair chance at things; or young men who just came from a Bible study class?" In fact, a few years after this was said, an unemployed computer programmer tried to start a firebomb in a New York subway (after writing blackmail letters to the City). He was stopped by a young black man who was coming home on the subway from a Bible study class.

You see, if we are all God, as Shirley McLaine and others have said, and no one's (or the Bible's) morality is worth anything, then the only thing stopping me from beating up an old lady on her way to deposit her Social Security check on the first of the month is the strength of my legs or the speed of my car to get away from the scene before any police arrive. This is not the interpretation most readers here would make from such a pro—moral relativism hypothetical argument, but it IS the interpretation a lot of cocky 18 year olds would make, particularly young males, who already act like they're God.

Jack Kemp is a frequent contributor. He is not a former politician.