A new morality?
I recently had an experience that I'm having trouble getting my head around and causing me to wonder if morality is dead. I know it isn't. There are too many acts of kindness stories. Maybe morality is just eroding.
A tenant in a house I rented decided, without my knowledge, that it needed an air-conditioner. So he cut a hole in the walls and installed one. He moved out, and I put the house up for sale, pointing out one of the features: an air-conditioner.
The house didn't sell, so I pulled it from the market and put it up for rent. Upon inspection with a prospective tenant, I found the air conditioner missing and the hole patched with an ugly, unsightly pressboard panel. Turns out the former tenant arranged for a buddy to gain access and remove the air-conditioner.
Now, the law is that an appurtenance can be removed by a tenant only if the removal causes no damage to the property. Meaning once attached...permanently attached.
The former tenant was contacted and rattled on in all directions, essentially claiming unjust enrichment if he left the air-conditioner. Fair enough if, first, the property had been left in original condition. And if, second, I hadn't given the tenant a break on the rent, charging him less than the going rate (for familial reasons not essential here).
The reason I'm having trouble is that I personally would never do that to anyone. So I'm wondering: am I, and probably most of us, unaware of some new morality?
I'm starting to think so. You don't arrest shoplifters and looters anymore? And by what rationale? Those who condone and sanction shoplifting and looting must have had something in mind. Oh, I suppose they would drone on as my tenant did, but what about the part where they are signaling the acceptance of a new society where property rights don't count?
I remember studying various forms of government when I was in the eighth grade. Communism. It was a one-page discourse. I read down and got to the part where no one owns property. I thought, stop right there — no need to read anymore. Same with socialism, which holds that, yes, you get to own property but not the right to use the property. Seems simple enough. Same thing. I remember a few years back asking a young college student to define socialism. He thought and thought, and finally..."no right to vote?"
When we examine the state of various countries in the world, it's pretty clear. Countries that allow ownership of property prosper. Countries that don't allow ownership of property don't prosper.
How easily we morph from a law-abiding society to anarchy. How easily we morph from a property rights country to no property rights. For example, many countries have declared that no one can own a gun. Others in some countries are clamoring for a similar declaration. How easily we morph from property ownership to no property ownership.
I guess the answer to the seeming eroding of morality is that under the new morality, anarchy is good.
To comment, you can find the MeWe post for this article here.