Is It Good to be Bad?

Posted on May 11, 2011

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Whenever a tragic event happens, people are often left wondering, why do bad things happen to good people? Why is someone who went to church every Sunday, donated to charity, volunteered in their community, and just an all around swell person, killed by a drunk driver? Where is the justice in that? Seemingly, there is none. So why does it happen? It happened because someone else decided to be irresponsible. What else could it be? Retribution for something wrong they did in the past? If so, what was the point to being a good person?

Being good or bad, obviously, is based on preference. People will act how they want to. The rewards are essentially the same. A good Samaritan will feel good for helping someone in need, and a robber will feel good after pick pocketing someone’s wallet or purse, or robbing a bank. Now, one argument might be that, while both individuals may feel better about themselves, one reward is superficial and will eventually dwindle, while the other is more fulfilling and eternal. But, just as there will always be people in need, there will likewise always be people to pick pocket and institutions to rob. One path will earn you love and respect, while the other gets you everything you could possibly want.

Granted a robber, if caught, will go to jail or be killed in a shoot-out with police, whereas a good Samaritan will always be rewarded-or will he? Life is full of unpleasant surprises. If your house was burned down, which would you prefer? Someone to help you by letting you sleep on their couch or on the floor next to their bed, or the money to stay at a hotel and, eventually, buy a new home and replace most if not all the things you lost? Some might prefer having the generous friend over large sums of money, which is understandable; money can’t buy love or compassion. However, who says bank robbers don’t have friends? Those friends might either be fellow conspirators or even normal people who don’t know the robber’s dark secret. Essentially that would mean while also having tons of money, robbers also have the fulfilling relationships of their good-doer counterparts. 

All things considered, why be a good person when being bad could potentially have all the same perks and more? Again, it all comes back to what a person wants. If you prefer to earn your money the honest way by working, then so be it. If you prefer to lie and steal, then fine. Either way, life will continue to run its course and bad things will continue to happen to both good and bad people. It’s up to you if you want good faith or good money when you hit that bump in the road.

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Posted in: Essays