Our favorite skeptical doctor cogently summarizes our era as the apex of orthodox, conformist, politically correct virtue signalling, which would have been difficult to imagine in our so-called free Western societies even a decade ago.
Holding the right opinions has never, at least in my lifetime, been as important as it is now—if, that is, you want a reputation as a good person. No doubt there has always been a tendency for people to conform their ideas to those of their group in order to be considered sound, decent, or good people, but the pressure to conform to the latest orthodoxy has increased, is still increasing—and ought to be reduced. Actual good conduct, which requires some effort, restraint, and even self-sacrifice, has correspondingly become less important in earning a reputation for goodness. Holding a placard, chanting a slogan, expressing an opinion, is enough.
“Actual good conduct, which requires some effort, restraint, and even self-sacrifice, has correspondingly become less important in earning a reputation for goodness.“
We have been amazed by the number of corporations and businesses that are rushing to display to the world the acceptable posture on the latest outrage du jour. Not only are individuals anxious about demonstrating that they hold the “right” opinions, so are businesses. It’s downright commercial now.
Advertise to the world how ‘good’ you are, shout it on the street corners with trumpets, make sure your left hand (and the world) knows what your right hand is doing (Matthew 6:1-4) ….
It’s hard not to feel extremely cynical about all of it. Easy virtue.
If it’s easy, though, it’s probably not virtue.