We should all be supremely suspicious of things that are sacrosanct.

It has been said many times that power corrupts. At the risk of accusations of hubris, I’d offer that power isn’t the problem at all. It’s power combined with sacrosanctity to make a unique environment. That environment is the absolute perfect growth medium for evil. So perfect, in fact, that I would be shocked to find such an environment where evil was not thriving.

Consider power without that need to make the behavior sacrosanct:

Overseeing operations at a nuclear power plant is power, but it has a tremendous amount of oversight. No one treats such folks with reverence or the operations as sacrosanct, because we all recognize that these are people who are simply doing their jobs. We need specialists to do this job. Specialists with a great degree of training and professionalism, to make important decisions that may affect millions of people. But we don’t revere them. There is no hiding behind dogma. There is no “How dare you question me” approaches to nuclear science. This lack of reverence (and it’s healthy!) leads to power properly coupled with transparency and responsibility.

Make no mistake, there are plenty of people out there in the world who have done many wonderful things, and likely deserve all sorts of reverence. But should they be sacrosanct?

There are plenty of organizations that have performed actions that are humanitarian, kind, and outstanding. But should those organizations be sacrosanct?

I guess that depends how much evil we’re willing to tolerate in our lives.

Every single time we build an environment that offers a rich nutrient bath for evil, evil is going to slip out of the party clothes and slide right on in.

In fact, considering just how easy evil becomes when such a combination exists, I’d be willing to hypothesize that the only people who want that combination — who want us to treat certain things as sacrosanct…

…are those who would most benefit from it.

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