Moral or Legal?

This Saturday post is brought to you by lack of fore-planning or time, and the fact that my head is awhirl (in between cleaning jags — me — and crying jags — the baby) with the following phrases:

“I didn’t do anything illegal.” “Was it illegal? No.”

I have heard those repeatedly on the news this week in slighty different forms, and in stories revolving around sexual abuse and Congressional graft. (I guess maybe graft is outright illegal. Call it Congressional insider trading.)

But what occurs to me to think is that if you have to justify your actions with semantics around what is legal, maybe you should check yourself and your *moral* compass. Because there may be plenty of things that are legal but not moral. But I’m guessing the equation doesn’t work the other way the majority of the time. The only thing that pops into my head is an exercise from ethics class concerning the morality of stealing medicine or other life-saving measures for someone in your family.

Which I’m sure is a choice faced by more and more people every day in this country. Maybe we do need to focus on what is moral more than what is legal.

I don’t know. It’s got me… thinking. But with no time to write, I turn it over to you, dear readers. What do you think?

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2 thoughts on “Moral or Legal?

  1. This is especially true in the recent political climate—with the way some factions are treating our government and out Constitution like a 10-year-old in a Nittany Lion jersey. With the screams of “Less Government”, “No Taxes” and “A Corporation is a Person” coming from the Right, the gap between legality and morality is widening daily. There is no law that says we must be moral. When Bill Clinton cheated on his wife it was perfectly legal (when he lied about it later, though, that’s different). A misguided soul whose out is “I didn’t do anything illegal” might very well consider morality to be a “regulation” that government has no business regulating. When a leader has to resort to such semantics to justify their actions, they are no longer leading. They are hiding.

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