Simi Valley Sophist

The Simi Valley Sophist ruminates on all manner of topics from the micro to the macro. SVS travels whatever path strikes his fancy. Encyclopedia Britannica: Sophist "Any of certain Greek lecturers, writers, and teachers in the 5th and 4th centuries BC, most of whom travelled about the Greek-speaking world giving instruction in a wide range of subjects in return ..."

Location: California, United States

Retired: 30years law enforcement-last 20 years Criminal Intelligence Detective.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Dissolution from Within-Fate of Our Country?

Clint Van Zandt, a former FBI profiler writes on the looting in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Here is a section of his piece entitled, Looting as a Measure of Society,
Eighty percent of the people who drowned when the Titanic sunk were men, yet another maritime example of "Women and Children First!" In 1992 one northeastern U.S. newspaper asked its readers if they would give up their seat on a lifeboat in a situation similar to that of the Titanic. Thirty-five percent of the men said they'd sacrifice themselves for an unrelated woman or child while two-thirds said they would give up their seat to their wife. Although only one major city, such results suggest how many of us have become increasingly self-centered in many aspects of our lives. Looting is both opportunistic and infectious, with many believing that "if they don't get theirs," others will simply take their share. In 'A Study of History' historian Arnold J. Toynbee tells us that most civilizations collapse not by invasion from aggressors, but by dissolution from within, what some refer to as a kind of cultural suicide. As the days and weeks go by, I hope that the many incidents of self sacrifice that are related to this disaster far outweigh those of selective looting, and that more of us are able to consider who we would really give our life boat seat to and why.
Dennis Prager often recounts that he routinely asks college student audiences to answer this question: If your dog or a stranger was drowning and you could only save one, which would you save? Prager says that the majority choose their dog.