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When Good People Do Nothing

There is this neat saying that urges us to remember that “bad things happen when good people do nothing”. Essentially, the world is represented by a zero-sum game if we go by this adage, because any “good” action withheld from the otherwise pernicious frenzy around us yields more ground to the forces of the dark side.

My view is simpler – there is some truth in saying that good people do good things which make things better for everyone. But a more basic observation makes it obvious that there wouldn’t be so much urgent need for so much good if there wasn’t so much bad out there. This leads us to a simple deduction – more people are bad than otherwise, doing more bad things than good.

Also, another interesting thing to note is that this saying implies that the natural state of things, the “order” if you will, is for bad things to happen ANYWAY. Notice how it states that “bad things happen WHEN good people blah blah”. So if we observe closely, by simply being a good person and not interfering with anything whatsoever, the natural order is for bad things to occur. So bad things are the NORM, not the exception. It is when good people come into this picture that bad things have a chance to be subdued. Also, these bad people are seemingly so much more industrious than the gooders – how else do you explain all the horrible things happening so very often? Little chinese factories of evil, they are.

Finally, of course, there is the question – what makes these good people good in the first place? Notice how this saying implies that the ability to prevent bad things from happening lies completely in the hands of these “good” people. Now look around you – you might just see more nonsense than sense. In other words, there is ALREADY more bad out there than good (Al Qaeda, Sarah Palin, moral policemen, Indian policemen, tea partiers, racists, Russian pedophiles, “moderate” fundamentalists, babus, Pakistan… you know what I mean). So all this exists because these good people didn’t do anything to stop them – implying that these “good” people extended support to these vermin through their inaction. They are, like Pakistan puts it, “non-state actors” in a theatre of evil. Even if these do-gooders didn’t mean to, they have inflicted this horror upon us. Conclusion – not very good, are they?

So lets put our hands together for the irony in this adage – no other saying conveys so much about the futility of today than this one does. 

Or, I have too much time on my hands. Stupid Allahabad court verdict.