Sunday, April 10, 2011

Child sacrifice: A political debate

A two-party system
A: For the sake of national security and prosperity, we must sacrifice ten children each month to Moloch. Moloch is an angry god, but fair. If we burn ten children alive on the temple altar, Moloch will ensure that we are well-fed and our enemies do not prevail against us. That is how things have been and we must observe the ancient traditions.

B: No, no, no, no – have you no heart? No conscience? You want to kill one hundred and twenty innocent children each year? Are you nuts? How horrible! Of course we should only sacrifice seven children each month. And we should make sure that the priests are well trained, that the sacrificial fire is sourced from sustainable wood and, for the sake of equal access, the victims are selected on a points-based system.
Image by CAC.


Anonymous said...

Not sure what you're trying to get at here Byron.

We are happy enough to go to wars and send people barely older than children off there as they join up full of testosterone.

To be honest. If there was a magical God who would take all that away with the sacrifice of a few children instead of vast amounts of people, why not.

Then again how can a god be fair if it requires torture of a child as they die. It should not be necessary.

So, without further clarification on this moment's blog, it sound like whimsy from the OT that most of the world has moved on from already.

Therefore - please feel free to clafiry the direction you want for comments here or a link to what you yourself are commenting on.

Justin Denholm said...

Well, I assume the point is not that we should give child sacrifice another chance in modern society...!

The tension here is a great one. If you are a voter in this two party-system, do you vote for party B because they are 'moderate'? After all, they regulate child sacrifice and have some policies that limit the impact of the practice.

Neither party, though, recognises that child sacrifice is simply wrong. Does this mean we get behind damage minimisation, opt out of voting or look for some alternative ways to engage with this issue politically? Lots of parallels to be drawn out on economic and environmental issues!

byron smith said...

Anon - Justin is precisely on the money.

Justin - I couldn't have put it better. Thanks!

harry potter said...

yah! Politicians always think that we are ................

byron smith said...

In a similar vein...

Andrew Chirgwin said...

Option A: Child sacrifice because Tradition!!
Option B: Child sacrifice, with really nice rooms so the kids aren't stressed before because COMPASSION...

Option C: Can we, I dunno, appease Moloch with something other than Children?
Option D: Can we, I dunno, follow Belphegor who promises us technology to solve our ills?
Option E:...

The two party system stays in place as long as people are convinced there are two options.

To quote GRRM and Brother Varys:
Varys: “Power is a curious thing, my lord. Are you fond of riddles?”

Tyrion: “Why? Am I about to hear one?”

V: “Three great men sit in a room, a king, a priest and the rich man. Between them stands a common sellsword. Each great man bids the sellsword kill the other two. Who lives? Who dies?”

T: “Depends on the sellsword”

V: “Does it? He has neither the crown, nor gold, nor favor with the gods”

T: “He’s has a sword, the power of life and death”

V: “But if it is the swordsman who rules, why do we pretend kings hold all the power? When Ned Stark lost his head, who was truly responsible? Joffrey, the executioner, or something else?”

T: “I have decided I don’t like riddles”

V: “Power resides where men believe it resides, it’s a trick, a shadow on the wall, and a very small man can cast a very large shadow”