In his novel, "1984," George Orwell warns us against three things. He stated that people are only out for personal gain, and will use any means to reach their goals. He also warned against these types of people who are already in power. And lastly, he warns us against the lost of privacy through constant surveillance, and how we actually allow this to happen.
If we all have the traits to become evil, why does it become a reality only in some? Before this question can be answered, we must first ask what evil actually is. Evil is "an intent to cause emotional trauma, to terrorize the helpless, to prolong suffering, and gain satisfaction from it all." Someone is considered evil if they willingly and gratuitously inflict harm on others. These people cannot empathize, they revel in others pain, they dehumanize their victims, they are narcissistic, and grandiose (they play God).
People are not just born evil. There are certain factors that contribute to this type of outcome in a person. There is a usually history of abuse or neglect. They felt unloved, or even unworthy of love. There is also the possibility of there being a chemical imbalance, causing abnormal brain functions, thus, making someone incapable of certain human emotions such as empathy, compassion, or pity. Other things that can cause someone to snap' could be sexual inadequacy, maternal smothering, paternal abuse, and narcissistic borderline personality disorder (a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and lack of empathy).
They tend to have a way to justify their actions. They will use an ideology, or beliefs that what they are doing is what is morally correct, and therefore have every right to commit the acts that they do. Take Reverend Arthur Allen for example. His church, the House of Prayer, has a firm belief in corporal punishment. After a young boy complained to his teacher that he was in pain, and the teacher found welts on his body, the police and county...
Cited: Ripley, Amanda. "Whippings in the Pulpit." Time (April 2, 2001): page 47.
Begley, Sharon. "The Roots of Evil." Newsweek (May 21, 2001): pages 29-35.
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