Monday, December 24, 2007

Good Will Hunting

I know the title's been used before, but I must confess that it seemed appropriate for this little item on National Newswatch. US actor Will Smith has stunned fans by reportedly declaring that Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler was essentially a "good" person. "Even Hitler didn't wake up going, 'Let me do the most evil thing I can do today," Smith told the newspaper in a wide-ranging interview. Maybe it's just the influence of the season, but I have to agree with Mr. Smith's hunt to find something good in everyone. It may be considered the "Norm" to jump all over Will Smith for his statements regarding Adolph Hitler, but he wasn't entirely wrong. We all know that Hitler was personally responsible for deaths of millions of people of the Jewish faith, but does anyone know Hitler for his unwillingness to allow his troops to use poison gas on Allied soldiers during World War II? Will Smith wasn't defending the actions of a psychotic, it seemed more like he was merely expressing his belief that maybe Jesus Christ knew something that we forgot: we're all born in sin. It's what we do from then on that makes us who we are. I like Will Smith, and can't really think of anything good about Hitler, so I'll just skip to the reason of this post: Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah and Al-salaamu Aleikum.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I applaud Will Smith's courage in saying what he did and I basically agree with your interpretation (though I will now secularize it). It is rare to find a person that would perposefully committ acts of evil for the sake of evil. There are plenty of people who committ acts of evil with the hope of a good turn out. And there are even more people that committ acts of evil thinking that they are acts of good. Moral questions thus become questions of faulty versus good logic.

Jews are bad we should therefore get rid of Jews, is reasonable if Jews are in fact bad.

Like Mr. Smith I'm not defending the actions. They were wrong in every sense.

They were however actions with the intention of good. So could we trully call Hitler pure evil?

Anonymous said...

Pure and utter garbage from beginning to end.

The reason ol Adolf did not use chemical weapons was not out of some made up concern for the welfar of allied troops. He banned their use so that there would be no retalitory use of chemical weapons on Germany.

Raphael Alexander said...

The fact that Hitler was a man and not a monster has been the most difficult aspect of that time in our history. It would easy to say that Hitler was a psychotic who wanted to kill all the time. The truth is likely that, like every politician, he probably felt he was actually achieving some kind of manifest destiny of the German people and that the Jews really were untermensch.

Where he cannot be forgiven is in his consistent belief that Jews were the ills of the world, and I do believe he did wake up in the morning wondering how he could more easily dispatch that people in ever more efficient ways.

By the way, you know you might get railroaded as a person who identifies on the right side of the hemisphere trying to rationalize the human side of Hitler. In Germany up until recent years it had been illegal to suggest it.

Paul MacPhail said...

Raphael, and anonymous, I wasn't trying to rationalize the human side of Hitler. I was trying to rationalize Will Smith. As far as my opinion of Hitler goes, in my mind he was a psychotic that was no better than Stalin or Hussein. The intelligent human response to that type of person should be death; people like that are a danger to the human race.

Raphael Alexander said...

Paul, rest assured I did not for a moment think you were. I did not phrase my sentences very well. I meant to speak rhetorically on the matter, not in any accusatory way. It's a very interesting topic to be sure and thanks for sharing it.