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October 05, 2005

Taking joy in the suffering of others

No, I am certainly not talking about myself. When someone makes a mistake or does something wrong, I do not look to celebrate it. However, I do not always see this from others.

In particular is the recent indictment of Tom DeLay. I do not know enough about this situation to judge guilt or lack thereof, nor do any of my fellow bloggers. Yet, this is the kind of stuff I see. Waldo Jaquith describing his "Joy!" and "Rapture!" Cari saying that it was "he BEST birthday EVER!" because of the indictment. And The Jaded JD saying that it was "sweeter" than the Miers nomination, citing his libertarian viewpoints leading to his frustration. (At this point, I'm glad I did not try to look at the Democratic Underground or I would have been writing a far longer post).

Waldo tried to make the following point.
Celebrating the capture of a criminal is as old as society and culture, and there ain't a damned thing wrong with it.
Funny, slavery and sexism against women are just as old, does that make them acceptable?

Celebrating that others are not being harmed any further is one thing. Celebrating the frustration (well deserved or not) of a criminal (in this case, quite a presumption with the ideal of innocence until proven guilt) is immature.

They are happy someone is suffering? These are the open-minded liberal and libertarian types? They may have good reason to show concern that DeLay held a high position in the House of Representatives (should he be found guilty). But taking amusement from this shows a lack of maturity from these bloggers. I will not say this is excludes conservatives; there are certainly some Republicans who act similarly when misfortune falls on a liberal. But for three bloggers who I generally have a lot of respect for to show such childishness and pettiness is very disappointing.