. . . The wilful spreading (propalatio) of something that detracts from another person's honour -- even if it does not come under the jurisdiction of the courts and even if what is said is true -- diminishes respect for humanity as such, so as finally to cast the shadow of worthlessness over our race itself, making misanthropy (averson from men) or contempt the prevalent way of thinking.
Wanton censure and a mania for ridicule, the propensity to expose others to laughter so as to make their faults the immediate object of amusement, are [a form of] malice. . . . But to expose to laughter the real faults which would tend to rob the person of the respect he deserves, or supposed faults as if they were real, has something of fiendish delight in it, as does the propensity to this, a caustic wit (spiritus causticus); and this makes it an even more serious violation of our duty of respect to other men.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
I've been on vacation and have been catching up on some less than light reading. While reading the second volume of Kant's Metaphysic of Morals I was struck by how apropos his succinct definitions of a couple vices were to describing the standard fare on Talk Radio and Fox News. Here are a couple quotes:
Posted by Bruce Prescott at 8:06 AM