Miss(ed) Manners

September 19, 2007

Ask Dave! Vol. 11

Filed under: Ask Dave — missedmanners @ 12:06 pm

Dave, why do bad things happen to good people?

-Petered Out in Punxsutawney

I love questions like this.  I could totally wax philosophic for a couple thousand words about how our teeny little human grasp of morality is so tenuous in the galactic sense that you could slip right off the mortal thought train for good with just one too many hits of acid or an extra bottle of absinthe if you ever wanted to just sit, get high and think about it. But that really wouldn’t be funny would it?

Where’s the humor in realizing that bad things happen at an equally high rate to both bad people AND good people? Instead, let’s grab a little fuzzy logic and take a look at this bad boy.

If bad things happen to good people, then the real question you should be asking yourself is, “why do good things happen to bad people?”

Because the law of entropy favors the chaotic? Because there is a God and he’s a total dick? Because being good means not doing a whole lot, since almost everything is considered bad these days, so there are just more bad people than good and the law of averages dictates that they’d have more good things happen to them than the four good people left in the world?

Also, who decides who’s good and who’s bad? I’ve spent large portions of my life being incredibly unwholesome, horribly immoral, a liar, a cheat and even sometimes a thief… but I’d still consider myself a good person. I like dogs, children and the elderly that qualifies me for Goodness, right?

Or maybe you want to take the Catholic look at things and just say everyone’s bad, bad, naughty little boys and girls from the start and the only way to be good is to battle an oppressive guilt and your own nature until you’re so sexually repressed you have to masturbate in a pitch black room, but you’re still good.

What we need, and I’m showing some serious geek colors here, in this world is an alignment chart, ala Dungeons and Dragons. I ripped the following links from Wikipedia:

Lawful Good Neutral Good Chaotic Good
Lawful Neutral Neutral Chaotic Neutral
Lawful Evil Neutral Evil Chaotic Evil

If everyone walked around carrying a card with their alignment on it, then it would make answering this question SO much easier, as we’d have empirical facts on bad things happening to Good people.

Until then, we’re kinda fucked, as far as this questions goes anyway. Might as well re-roll that Paladin.

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