All Is Fair in Love and War - Paper

Topics: Ethics, Bangladesh Liberation War, Morality Pages: 4 (1050 words) Published: February 14, 2013

All is fair in love and war- do you agree or disagree and explain why?


Love and war are two contrasting forces; the former involves care and personal attachment while the latter involves brute force and destruction. They are also very similar in the sense that success in love and war can lead to the creation of happiness, relationship, devotion, liberty and freedom etc. all of which can shape a persons or societies lifestyle. However, because of such tempting and important factors, in both love and war people can become so much focused and obsessed in their cause that they forget about their moral values and may even engage in malpractice to achieve their goals. Although such means can sometimes help them achieve their goals, I think these are not at all justified as they lead to the benefit of one at the loss of another, that is, they lead to selfless biasness, and according to Sen & Mitra (1956) can hinder the overall peace and progress of a society. As such, I disagree with the notion made by John Lyly in his book 'Euphues' (1578) that “all is fair in love and war”.

Justification of my claim can be proved by illustrating the criticisms of an ethical framework known as Machiavellianism. This concept is similar to the notion of John Lyly because it states that “ends justify means”. According to this concept, people can use any means, no matter they are bad or immoral as long as it helps them accomplish their goal (which in this case is achieving success in love or war) by using them. I think such a proverb is very much illogical. If we approve this, it would mean that even use of unfair means to achieve goals is justified under the circumstances similar to love and war. To illustrate for instance, in love this would mean the use of cheating, blackmailing, betrayal, stalking, and infighting. Similarly, in war it would also involve cheating, torture, kidnapping, bribery, fraud etc. All of these are illegal acts and as Richman (2012)...
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