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Thread: Retribution vs. Justice

  1. #1

    Thumbs down Retribution vs. Justice

    Hi all, I thought I'd put forward a question which is philosophical in a way, and would like to hear your reasoning behind your ideas of this topic. The opinion that you share does not necessarily have to mean that you would act that way in that circumstance, or that you even condone certain actions, but would like to ultimately conclude how justice and retribution work.

    Recently I've found that friends were having bad experiences with a landlord. Understandably, it could have been their fault or the landlord's fault, but they did what they had to do and moved out as quickly as they could. They had to leave their pet cats behind to come and fetch them the next day. In this time, when they arrived the one cat's jaw was broken and nose was bleeding, and the other cat was hiding behind the burglar bars not wanting to come out.

    The landlord said that a dog attacked them, but when they took the cat to the vet they found no puncture marks, and were so abused by the landlord over the time that they were staying there that they felt that this was just one last slap in the face. The cats were never in any contact with any dogs before for the year that they lived there, and had never been in any fights before.

    So, after that long winded explanation, i had the discussion with my wife and mused at how justice worked. I don't believe in any hidden forces that measure good and bad, and i doubt the police would be too concerned about a cat being beaten without much evidence. My wife said that i should stay out of the situation because the landlord would get what is coming to him, but i don't believe in that kind of justice. I don't see bad people paying unless good people speak up or take situations like this into their own hands.

    I struggle with the buddhist way of life because i find it hard to care about people that act so abusive and cruelly, and say that no authorities do take any action and the landlord gets away with kicking the poor animal and it doesn't affect his conscience either, because in his world view he was correct to kick the animal as payback, how would you feel about the situation and how would you handle it after all the other options were wasted?

  2. #2

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    I agree, bad people don't always get what they deserve. The only way they do, is if the "good" people give them what they deserve.
    The whole karma thing, I think, is mambo jumbo, if I do good, something good isn't necessarily going to happen to me. And when it does, I doubt if there is some force driving it. Good things happen to good people because they place themselves in the position to let good things happen to them. The always give to other people, so once in a while someone will give something back, now, that is not karma, that is just another nice person. If you go out and beat people and behave badly, no one is going to reward you, no, people will also beat you up and hence bad things happen to you.

    As for this specific situation, I will maybe get involved. What happened is bad, the poor cats, they had nothing to do with the whole story, but they get affected the most. So go and cut the landlords tires, or something like that, leave a note that stays "The black cat was here". Hopefully one of the cats are black?
    "Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves" - Albert Einstein

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by StellenboschStudent View Post
    I agree, bad people don't always get what they deserve. The only way they do, is if the "good" people give them what they deserve.
    The whole karma thing, I think, is mambo jumbo, if I do good, something good isn't necessarily going to happen to me. And when it does, I doubt if there is some force driving it. Good things happen to good people because they place themselves in the position to let good things happen to them. The always give to other people, so once in a while someone will give something back, now, that is not karma, that is just another nice person. If you go out and beat people and behave badly, no one is going to reward you, no, people will also beat you up and hence bad things happen to you.

    As for this specific situation, I will maybe get involved. What happened is bad, the poor cats, they had nothing to do with the whole story, but they get affected the most. So go and cut the landlords tires, or something like that, leave a note that stays "The black cat was here". Hopefully one of the cats are black?
    i think that would just cause more trouble however, as they would have proof and not that many people care about an animal getting beaten unless you have a lot of proof or even a witness. i also believe karma is mumbo jumbo, but i was more curious from a philosophical point of view how people reason what they would do and how they would handle it. i some people are pacifists and would have a different approach to dealing with it, some are nihilists who would say "**** happens", so i just wondered how people would go about it. i've basically muzzled myself from itnerfering because it's not my pets or my problem, but i feel that it is incredibly wrong and unfair.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by smalltownsky View Post
    i think that would just cause more trouble however, as they would have proof and not that many people care about an animal getting beaten unless you have a lot of proof or even a witness. i also believe karma is mumbo jumbo, but i was more curious from a philosophical point of view how people reason what they would do and how they would handle it. i some people are pacifists and would have a different approach to dealing with it, some are nihilists who would say "**** happens", so i just wondered how people would go about it. i've basically muzzled myself from itnerfering because it's not my pets or my problem, but i feel that it is incredibly wrong and unfair.
    Sorry, I maybe got a bit off topic yes.
    I agree with you that the landlord, from his viewpoint, thinks he did nothing wrong in abusing the animal. He maybe thought it was his "right" because the owners left them there, so maybe he had to take care of them. He was also mad at the people leaving the apartment, as he now has to get new tenants, so he took that out on the cats. He got his payback, as you put in, and he feels chuffed with himself.
    I care more for the cat that I will ever care for the landlord (even though I have not met either one). Unfortunately people are "programmed" differently, and what you and I see as wrong, he sees as right.
    "Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves" - Albert Einstein

  5. #5

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    Wow, that landlord must have been ticked off. Does he have a reason for being ticked off? I don't have the full story to know how I would react honestly, every situation needs to be understood fully imo.

    Whatever happened though still does not give him the right to do what he did to those poor cats (sorry to hear) no matter how ticked off he was. I don't think slashing his tires is the best way to make you feel better though.
    You can't trust a meta-ethical moral relativist since such a person can abuse reason to justify any act.


  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by StellenboschStudent View Post
    Sorry, I maybe got a bit off topic yes.
    I agree with you that the landlord, from his viewpoint, thinks he did nothing wrong in abusing the animal. He maybe thought it was his "right" because the owners left them there, so maybe he had to take care of them. He was also mad at the people leaving the apartment, as he now has to get new tenants, so he took that out on the cats. He got his payback, as you put in, and he feels chuffed with himself.
    I care more for the cat that I will ever care for the landlord (even though I have not met either one). Unfortunately people are "programmed" differently, and what you and I see as wrong, he sees as right.
    trust me, i personally wish i could break his kneecaps regardless of who is right in all of this, an animal has no say and has no right to be a victim in a dispute, i just don't want to condone violence towards him or suggest that violence is acceptable in this situation

  7. #7
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    No evidence as you say the police aren't going to care.

    Sad, but it is one of those situations you just can't help.
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by porchrat View Post
    No evidence as you say the police aren't going to care.

    Sad, but it is one of those situations you just can't help.
    i do get very emotional when i see bad people get away with things like this, because i personally saw photos of the cat and it looked quite bad. i actually have no right to interfere and i understand that it would be better if i didn't from a logical point of view, or at least for the benefit of my family and me. i just realise that people often get that feeling where they wish they could say something but they don't because they feel at the time that it was better to say nothing, and they watch bad people go unpunished, so i was curious how people see the whole retribution/justice philosophy

  9. #9

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    I want to hear the full story , why did they have to move out?
    You can't trust a meta-ethical moral relativist since such a person can abuse reason to justify any act.


  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by smalltownsky View Post
    i do get very emotional when i see bad people get away with things like this, because i personally saw photos of the cat and it looked quite bad. i actually have no right to interfere and i understand that it would be better if i didn't from a logical point of view, or at least for the benefit of my family and me. i just realise that people often get that feeling where they wish they could say something but they don't because they feel at the time that it was better to say nothing, and they watch bad people go unpunished, so i was curious how people see the whole retribution/justice philosophy
    Well, in this case there will be no justice. And I doubt if the landlord will ever say sorry or anything like that, because "he didn't do it". The best would be for the landlord to come out and say, sorry, I had a bad day, and I took it out on your cats, I will pay for the vet. But we don't live in an ideal world, things don't work that way. I bet the owners of the cat will say it is fine, they don't want him to pay, they just want the truth.
    But that is the problem, he won't admit it, because maybe, just maybe, the owners will press charges or give his name to the SPCA.

    For certain cases, like this, I would just prefer retribution. If he went and killed the cats, justice.
    "Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves" - Albert Einstein

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Techne View Post
    I want to hear the full story , why did they have to move out?
    i'd rather not, but it narrows down to them having been friends for years before that and things turning sour once they moved in on the premises. i don't know what they will do, it's like a typical soapie fight and i wouldn't be surprised if lawyers were called in.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by smalltownsky View Post
    Hi all, I thought I'd put forward a question which is philosophical in a way, and would like to hear your reasoning behind your ideas of this topic. The opinion that you share does not necessarily have to mean that you would act that way in that circumstance, or that you even condone certain actions, but would like to ultimately conclude how justice and retribution work.

    Recently I've found that friends were having bad experiences with a landlord. Understandably, it could have been their fault or the landlord's fault, but they did what they had to do and moved out as quickly as they could. They had to leave their pet cats behind to come and fetch them the next day. In this time, when they arrived the one cat's jaw was broken and nose was bleeding, and the other cat was hiding behind the burglar bars not wanting to come out.

    The landlord said that a dog attacked them, but when they took the cat to the vet they found no puncture marks, and were so abused by the landlord over the time that they were staying there that they felt that this was just one last slap in the face. The cats were never in any contact with any dogs before for the year that they lived there, and had never been in any fights before.

    So, after that long winded explanation, i had the discussion with my wife and mused at how justice worked. I don't believe in any hidden forces that measure good and bad, and i doubt the police would be too concerned about a cat being beaten without much evidence. My wife said that i should stay out of the situation because the landlord would get what is coming to him, but i don't believe in that kind of justice. I don't see bad people paying unless good people speak up or take situations like this into their own hands.

    I struggle with the buddhist way of life because i find it hard to care about people that act so abusive and cruelly, and say that no authorities do take any action and the landlord gets away with kicking the poor animal and it doesn't affect his conscience either, because in his world view he was correct to kick the animal as payback, how would you feel about the situation and how would you handle it after all the other options were wasted?
    Ok, I am a big animal lover and I don't believe if u a bad guy u would get ur turn on bad things. Tbh I would personally kick the crap out of the landlord and say how does it feel being abused (But I will wear a mask or something so that I won't go to court), and then I will give his name up at the SPCA.

    My opinion! But that landlord would suffer my wrath.
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  13. #13
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    I would have to be certain to do anything.
    Last edited by TheHiveMind; 14-10-2010 at 12:54 PM.

  14. #14
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    Haha. Situations like this make me think of my father. He is the most stubbornly volatile person in situations like this and in his younger days would probably pick up the guys tv and throw it at him just for starters lol. And he loves cats to bits, beat up a neighbour for trying to throw one off a balcony then he adopted the cat.

    Had I been a witness to this guy kicking the cat I could probably say like father like son. Philosophy and rightful thinking goes out the window when idiots are about :/ pity there is fear of court and what not but I'm sure there are ways too. Such as a good threat maybe a coward like that would probably shyte in his pants.
    Last edited by Jonny Two Shoes; 14-10-2010 at 02:03 PM.

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