Monday, February 1, 2010

Orphans, Laws, and Mercy

By now, most have heard about the Baptists who were arrested with a bus full of Haitian kids crossing into the Dominican Republic. The Prime Minister of Haiti is claiming the they “know what they were doing was wrong” and that “It is clear now that some of the children have live parents.”

Honestly, I don’t think these missionaries knew what they were doing was wrong. In fact, I’m almost positive these people were too stupid to realize that what they were doing was illegal, and that they surely believed it was even a righteous and praiseworthy deed. Unfortunately for the world, a mountain of best intentions does not hold as much weight as a handful of atrocious results.

In fact, this is one of the reasons we need laws. Laws are meant to standardize how we handle various situations. Laws are meant to allow us to treat all situations the same, regardless of emotional distortion. It is good to have laws, because without them we would have millions of people trying to act in their own “good” way. “I bet my neighbor would just love it if I cut down this tree between our lawns...” Yeah, what could go wrong?

In times of disaster, anarchy is a temporary reality. Many people continue to do good during these trying times, but they often do bad things in the name of good (or simple survival), without even realizing the injustice. Without the oversight of a stable society enforcing rules, this happens more often than it should.

What’s worse, some people use disaster to capitalize off of others. Looting is rampant, and some even seek to profit from those reaching out to help the victims by running charity scams. These are the kinds of people who should face the full force of justice.

The Baptist “human traffickers” were wrong, but it pales in comparison to the real criminals who seek to lead children to a life of slavery or forced prostitution. The rules are there to stop both the ignorant and the monstrous among us. However, mercy ought to be shown for the former.

I am glad the bus was stopped and the children can be properly documented. Hopefully some of them do find their families, and I wish each and every one of the true orphans could be adopted out through legal channels to a loving home. Finally, I trust that leniency will be shown on the naïve fools who thought that “doing God’s work” supersedes the laws of man.


  1. Who says that without the laws of the ruling class there would be no rules? As usual, you reveal your ignorance of anarchy and anarchist theory.

  2. I think those people acted on their OWN version of what was right and wrong. That is, they acted and what they believed was right and then claimed it was what god wanted them to do. I think that basically this is what many religious people do. They are following "their heart" and not their head, but claiming it is what god's heart. "God told me to" is an extremely popular excuse.

  3. SE: I agree it does not need to be the wealthy or some "ruling class" I had previously been unaware of who decides the rules. I didn't sanctify any particular style of government, I merely pointed out that anarchy is a festering breeding ground for error. If you disagree, I recommend you just move to Somalia and live out your fantasy.

    beep: I agree, they were following their McDonalds clogged American hearts. Many people (especially the religious) really believe they "know better" than legislators. This is sort of a crime in itself, one which I don't think deserves punishment, especially not punishment comparable to child trafficking.

  4. @ SE- Go to Nigeria and see what happens.... Lots of fun there.

    I really do not know what to think of it. I would like to think that they do not know better, but I do not think that that is so. I am sorry. I think that they saw a window to "help" these kids, and they took it. And, you never know what they would have done to those kids if they had gotten away with it. Smells like evil spirit to me....

  5. Could have been stupidity, that is a valid reason, but it just does not make sense. My job has taught me three things that you can count on when something does not make sense. 1. You have the wrong information or 2. You are missing information or 3. Someone is changing the information.

  6. I think the most "insidious" thought in their head was religious conversion. Honestly, in the grand scheme of things, this is low on the list of bad intentions. Sure, it's not altruistic, but it is the most likely answer. I am going to need some evidence before I believe there was some sort of evil plot to sexually molest those kids.

    I live by the maxim: innocent until proven guilty. I also assume that a government as poorly run as Haiti's is in the habit of assuming the worst in people (maybe because that's all they see).

  7. Yes, Baptists do have the highest rate of conversion, nevertheless. BTW, just cause I said smells like evil does not mean that I was suggesting sexual exploitation, which could be a possibility. I was also thinking about child labor, etc. Still does not sound right to me, and the explanation is too easy.

  8. Never heard of Baptist labor camps. I wonder if forcing someone to remain abstinent until marriage constitutes sexual abuse...

  9. Nope, not what I meant. I was wondering if they were using that as a front, or if they bought them or something like that. I read what the CBC wrote about it... You may be right, they may just have been that stupid. But, our media is also reporting that they were taking them to the Dominican to set up an orphanage (?).... They are claiming that they did not know that they had to have paperwork... I don't know, I always have to fill out paperwork when I got to a foreign country. And, I saw a picture of them...


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