FROM THE BOQ: BUSINESS, POLITICS AND ETHICS #86

Another question from Gregory Stock’s book is this:

If your government killed many people by wrongly bombing another country, would you feel a personal responsibility to try to make amends?

This question is somewhat vague.

It’s times like this I wish I could contact Dr. Stock personally, and ask for clarification.

What is meant by wrongly here? 

Mistakenly–as illustrated in the film, Fail Safe?

Or needlessly–as seen in the recent bombings of Gaza (the Israeli government did not need to kill nearly two thousand civilians simply to destroy tunnels allegedly dug by Hamas)?

And what is meant by make amends?

How can amends be made to the dead–or to those who grieve their loss?

If my government killed many people by wrongly bombing another country, I could not make amends.

But I could certainly call my government to task for its actions.  And perhaps this is really the point of the question:

If my government commits an atrocity of any kind, am I personally responsible to call it to task–to hold it responsible for its atrocious act?

Absolutely.

Because it is my government.

And I will call my government to task–I will hold it responsible for any atrocity it commits–in whatever peaceful manner I can, however small.

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