Monday, September 30, 2013

A Timeless Question

Is all fair in love and war?

I started this post with the intention of presenting both sides. "No, all is NOT fair in love and war, however here are some scenarios where maybe "unfair" actions are justified..."

But I couldn't do that, and have since deleted my feeble, grasping attempts. ALL is not ever fair in love OR war. Fairness and unfairness, justice and injustice legitimately exist in every situation in my mind--love and war included.

{However, one draft of this post contained a sentence that I kinda liked:  "Obviously I believe the same principle should protect me from all the man-stealing attention whores out there, slogging through the filth of their own lives." I'm in a really good mood right now, but somehow that strongly-worded sentence still popped into my mind.}

I remember wrestling with the question when I was eleven or twelve. I went back and forth, imagining myself in different situations, trying to see if there were times when I would justify actions that would normally be unfair. I honestly can't remember which opinion I settled on, or if I ever settled at all. I'm sure I tried to convince myself at some point that all WAS fair in love and war, if for no other reason than to be dramatic.

But no. I don't care how much I love a guy, if he's dating someone else, it is not fair for me to go after him. I don't care how much you love a girl, it's not fair for you to spread rumors about her crush so that she'll go for you instead.

This also means that if someone acts unfairly towards YOU in the name of their love, you still aren't allowed to react unjustly to them. Sorry.

War is a little harder for me to paint black and white. Where do you draw the line between "cleverly taking a tactical advantage," and "being dishonorable and underhanded"? I'm not sure, but I don't have to determine that in order to say that there ARE some things that are unfair even in war.

Using kids as ferries for bombs to make the enemy hesitant to eliminate the threat? NOT FAIR, VIETNAM.

Somehow this post/thought feels incomplete to me, but I really have nothing more to say.

What do you guys think? Is all fair in love and war?


1 comment:

  1. I've learned that many phrases we're familiar with, like the one you mention here, are incomplete and when we hear the entire phrase it often changes the meaning significantly. I have no idea if that phrase is complete or not. Even if it is I don't think it's true, I think people spout it off as a way of condoning their actions and appeasing their conscience.

    The actions to avoid in love that you mentioned could also be called honor in my mind. It's not right to chase someone who is already involved or to spread rumors to get the person we like to leave the one their with. Those are selfish actions, completely unfair.

    War in general is unfair. In war, might = right. Sometimes the "better" nation wins, sometimes it doesn't. Whether one side of the war uses women or children to carry bombs, willingly or against their will, how is that any better than anyone else in the conflict? It is still killing. They made a big stink in Syria for using chemical weapons. Why are those so much worse than conventional methods or even nukes? People are dead. End of story. It's made even worse by the fact that many of these wars involved Christian nations. Way to preach the message of love.