Grappling with the Gray

Grappling with the Gray #67: Two sides to any story?

October 25, 2023 Yonason Goldson
Grappling with the Gray
Grappling with the Gray #67: Two sides to any story?
Show Notes

This panel discussion was recorded on October 18, Global Ethics Day. I had planned a different topic for discussion, but we really can’t avoid addressing the current crisis in the Mideast.

Here is our topic:

The plight of 2 million residents of Gaza has been desperate for decades. It may seem easy and convenient to blame Israel, but the reality of the situation is far more complicated. In 2005, after many years of conflict, Israel unilaterally withdrew from the territory and forcibly removed 10,000 of its own settlers.

Some observe that Gaza had the opportunity to become another Singapore or Dubai. Instead, Hamas leaders launched missile attacks on Israel and diverted humanitarian aid to build hi-tech terror tunnels, prompting Israel to retaliate against terrorist strongholds and blockade the enclave, resulting in collateral civilian casualties and suffering as well as widespread poverty. Now their leaders hide out in Qatar while telling their people not to evacuate before an approaching Israeli offensive.

Support for Israel around the world has been overwhelming. But that hasn’t stopped students at Harvard and universities across the country, together with protesters around the world, from speaking out in defense of Hamas and against Israel. Having studied the history of the region, it’s hard not to conclude that many of these are either willfully ignorant or blinded by ideology.

It’s also arguable that support for Palestinians around the world legitimizes and encourages acts of terror. The French government has even criminalized public support for Hamas.

Free speech is one of the cornerstones of a free society. But when opinion is built on misinformation, and when it might actually encourage violence, to what extent should free speech be tolerated and protected? Moreover, once governments outlaw speech where we agree it is necessary, what happens when those same governments outlaw speech we think should remain permitted?

Furthermore, when both sides have merit, but when that merit is profoundly lopsided in one direction, how do we acknowledge both sides without drifting into moral equivalence?

Meet this week’s panelists:

Jennifer H. Elder, is a CPA and Certified Speaking Professional who helps leaders future-proof their businesses by making smart decisions and staying ethical.

John E. McGlothlin is a captain in the Army Judge Advocate General's Corps and D.C. army reserve, as well as an adjunct professor of business and ethics at the University of Maryland Global Campus.

Stewart Wiggins is Chief Advisor at Induna Advisors, working to significantly increase company revenue by developing positive client reports and establishing solid business relationships.

#ethics #terror #israel #communication #freespeech #ethicsninja #yonasongoldson #rabbigoldson #therabbi #grappling