Let’s Study Why People Do Good Things

By | December 2, 2021 | 0 Comments

We spend millions of dollars and untold hours studying why people do bad things. The result of all this effort is difficult to see. We are still plagued with violent crime, and the rates are rising, not falling – hardly a ringing endorsement of all our efforts.

On the contrary, we spend almost no money or effort studying why people do good things. But we should. Isn’t that what we want? Or is it? Ordinary people like us want more people to do more good things. That would make a safer, happier, better world. But many politicians want more people to do bad things. This creates the chaos that frightens citizens into allowing politicians to assume dictatorial powers. More crime? More homelessness? More power for the very politicians who are making those problems worse. Where else can you a deal like that?

So let’s study people who do good things. Let’s study Tate Myre, the 16-year-old high-school football player who found the courage to rush a school shooter, helped to stop him, and paid with his life. Despite what was said about him, let’s study 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse, who was motivated to clean up graffiti and protect businesses from looting, and paid with his reputation and his future. Let’s study bloggers and others who are steadfast enough to express unpopular opinions, and pay with being called Nazis, White supremacists, or (worst of all) dangerous anti-vaxxers. And let’s study the Canadian pastor who insisted on holding church services and paid by being arrested and forced to kneel on a rain-soaked street.

Perhaps, if we study courageous people, we may develop a bit of courage and backbone ourselves. And then, just possibly, we will be emboldened to tell would-be tyrants what they can do with their overreaching decrees.

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