The people of Hong Kong are criticized for only being interested in business, but it's the only thing they've been allowed to do.
To see helpless infancy stretching out her hands, and pouring out her cries in testimony of dependence, without any powers to alarm jealousy, or any guilt to alienate affection, must surely awaken tenderness in every human mind; and tenderness once excited will be hourly increased by the natural contagion of felicity, by the repercussion of communicated pleasure, by the consciousness of dignity of benefaction.
Care should be taken that the punishment does not exceed the guilt; and also that some men do not suffer for offenses for which others are not even indicted.Cavendum est ne major poena quam culpa sit; et ne issdem de causis alii plectantur,alii ne appellentur quidem.
In the small circle of pain within the skullYou still shall tramp and tread one endless roundOf thought, to justify your action to yourselves,Weaving a fiction which unravels as you weave,Pacing forever in the hell of make-believeWhich never is belief: this is your fate on earthAnd we must think no further of you.
The thinking man must oppose all cruel customs no matter how deeply rooted in tradition and surrounded by a halo. When we have a choice, we must avoid bringing torment and injury into the life of another, even the lowliest creature; to do so is to renounce our manhood and shoulder a guilt which nothing justifies.
Very little of the great cruelty shown by men can really be attributed to cruel instinct. Most of it comes from thoughtlessness or inherited habit. The roots of cruelty, therefore, are not so much strong as widespread. But the time must come when inhumanity protected by custom and thoughtlessness will succumb before humanity championed by thought. Let us work that this time may come.
The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosions and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill and suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own - for the children, and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is that these things cannot be confined to the Twilight Zone.
All that remains to the mother in modern consumer society is the role of scapegoat; psychoanalysis uses huge amounts of money and time to persuade analysis and to foist their problems on to the absent mother, who has no opportunity to utter a word in her own defense. Hostility to the mother in our societies is an index of mental health.