Imagine you've been invited to a dinner-party by a close friend. At the last minute you find out that one of the other guests is, let's say, Karen, a prominent member of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC).
Suppose you are highly sceptical of climate change, viewing the CCC as an immoral propaganda machine and by implication its employees including Karen are politically immoral. What would you do? Would you:-
Call your host and explain why you can’t go.
Go to the dinner-party and try to involve Karen in some kind of dialogue.
Go to the dinner party and tell Karen what you think of the CCC.
Go to the dinner party and ignore Karen as far as possible.
It’s a problem isn’t it? What do we do when political immorality is so widespread?
There was a time when immorality was contained by ostracizing those who flouted the moral conventions of their class. One would not invite certain people into the family home, speak to them or even acknowledge them except possibly in the coldest, most distant way. Everyone knew what was going on too – and why the ostracism had happened.
What about today though? What if you are introduced to Sean – a person widely known to loaf away his time at the local council offices taking endless sickies from a well-paid job? Do you hold out the hand of casual friendship or do you accept the reality of political immorality? Do you draw lines in the moral sand and have nothing to do with him? If so, then do you tell him and why?
I freely admit that I’d have difficulty with these scenarios, but why? Because there is such a thing as political immorality and surely we should say so outside the blogosphere as well as inside?