Dean Acheson, who orchestrated the Marshall Plan and helped create the North Atlantic Treaty Organizaation, had no use for moralizing in foreign policy. He once said that listening to pious Canadians discuss foreign affairs was like listening to the “stern daughter of the voice of God.”
His point was that there’s a big difference between being moral and moralizing. Being moral is about changing the way you act and actually helping others. It requires humility and tolerance because it arises from an awareness of one’s own moral failings.
Moralizing, by contrast, is about changing the way other people act—by force if necessary. Moralizing breeds intolerance and even tyranny because it springs from a belief that, like the pious Canadians, not only do you know the truth but you also have a solemn duty to impose it on others.
In America today, being moral is out and moralizing is in. Just witness the nonstop spectacle of moralizing everywhere you turn—from The New Yorker’s panicked denunciation of Chick-fil-A’s “infiltration” of New York, to gun control activist David Hogg’s boycotts, to the protestor with a megaphone shouting in a Starbucks clerk’s face.
YOUR INDUSTRY CAN BURN. HOW DARE YOU? YOU TINY SOULS. YOU …read more