Do "good" and "bad" people actually exist?

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by leafeon34, Jul 8, 2018.

  1. leafeon34
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    leafeon34 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Are "good people" "good" by personal choice? Did they make the right decisions growing up? Were they lucky enough to be born into a loving family? Were they lucky enough not to suffer from mental illness? Were they lucky enough to have enough food on the table? Were they blessed with altruistic genes?

    EDIT: As I posted on the second page
     
    Last edited by leafeon34, Jul 8, 2018
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  2. snails1221

    snails1221 You're here forever

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    We are all corrupt on the inside, just some less than others.
     
  3. Lia

    Lia GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    thank you for not really answering the question at all lmao
     
  4. Veho

    Veho The man who cried "Ni".

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    The circumstances of one's birth are irrelevant. It is what you do with the gift of life that determines who you are.
     
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  5. Chary

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    There's people who grow up to stab squirrels and shoot dogs for fun. Some rape others just on a whim, even if they had a loving home. So yeah, some people can be inherently bad.
     
  6. Lia

    Lia GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    guys pls read the post
     
  7. onibaku

    onibaku Advanced Member

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    Hmm difficult questions to answer. I think it varies. I think being good is a characteristic developed over time and based on choices you have previously made. For instance, when someone commits a "bad act and crosses the "ethical" boundaries, its pushes that boundary further, making it easier to commit "bad" acts. That's not to say they can't change for the better, of course they can, it's just a matter of realization and reprogramming yourself and just having that will to do so. There are so many variables that come into play but I do believe that some people may be inherently evil :D

    Edit: I think it does somewhat boil down to personal choice too. There are situations where I feel that I can be a douche or a nice guy, I personally find that being a douche does not generate good or productive outcomes for either party. It may also depend on your ability to reflect, and also to be able to predict the outcome of ur actions.
     
    Last edited by onibaku, Jul 8, 2018
  8. osaka35

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    I figure a good person is one who recognizes when they mess up and try to not do it again. Effort, intent, results. These make for a good person. Opposite for a bad person(no awareness, no desire to change or grow, no effort put in to not do bad things, etc). Good person can do bad things, bad person can do good things, it's all in how it's handled and changed over time.

    Though personality and influences have a huge impact on where someone starts out on the good/bad spectrum. Harder for some than it is others, for sure. But really, being good is mainly about the choice to be good. Either you try and be good, or you're not good. Some find it more effortless because of upbringing or personality, but it's always a choice.
     
    Last edited by osaka35, Jul 8, 2018
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  9. yuyuyup

    yuyuyup GBAtemp Psycho!

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    after birth they dip the baby in either good sauce or bad sauce
     
  10. onibaku

    onibaku Advanced Member

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    The reason why I think people can be inherently bad is mostly due to one bad experience I had growing up. I was maybe 5 years old at the time and we had been camping somewhere with other campers. I came across some other children, mustve been about 4 years old, I remember them being slightly younger than me. They were basically tossing around this helpless kitten in the mud and laughing, it was on the brink of death. When I saw the kitten I started crying and took it to our camp site, cleaned it up and took care of it for the time we were there.

    So basically I believe it also has a lot to do with the chemical make up of our brain. To be able to be empathetic.
     
  11. snails1221

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    I was answering the title "Do "good" and "bad" people actually exist" but, if you would like me to answer everything in the post I will.

    >Are "good people" "good" by personal choice
    It really depends, if someone was raised in a home where said "good" morals where forced upon them they might feel more obligated to follow them.

    >Did they make the right decisions growing up?
    If by growing up you mean 0-19 years old then no not necessarily. Although hard you can still turn your life around at that point.

    >Were they lucky enough to be born into a loving family?
    Being raised in a loving family is crucial to "moral development". If one is raised in a family where both the mother and father care about the child, they are less prone to go down the path of "evil". Whereas if said child is raised in a family with lets say, a single mother that is working multiple shifts to put food on the table they might be more drawn to trouble.

    >Were they lucky enough not to suffer from mental illness?
    In my opinion mental illnesses are irrelevant when it comes to morals 90% of the time.

    >Were they lucky enough to have enough food on the table?
    If a child is desperate enough they could result to stealing food, or money to buy food. The experience of stealing may not seem that bad to the child and they might inclined to do it again.

    >Were they blessed with altruistic genes?
    If someone has "altruistic" genes they may feel more guilty when doing something morally wrong but, as with anything if you try hard enough you can break through the mental barrier.
     
  12. infinete

    infinete The Temp's cynic.

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    I think upbringing helps to a degree but ultimately it is personal choice. The term good though is such a grey area. I think a good person considers the possible consequences of their decision and chooses the one which causes the least pain to others. So again ultimately by choice.
     
  13. Saiyan Lusitano

    Saiyan Lusitano GBAtemp Guru

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    Well, let's go by the most obvious example. If someone wants you dead, is he or she a "good" person in your opinion? You don't need to answer, it's rhetorical.
     
  14. Enkuler

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    Well I feel like one could grow up in a family that doesn't care (willfully or not) but still have friends to hang out with and get that necessary love you're talking about, AND use their family as a negative role-model to become a good person.

    If your family is a loving one but one that fails to deal with your special points, you can feel like no one will understand you (because if someone could, your family would, or at least that's what you'd think), and you could end up hating everyone.
    ...Or get back to my first sentence, you find what you need in your friends instead of your family, and use your family as a negative role-model and still become a good person. But mental illnesses are not irrelevant. They are just not directly relevant.
    Which is exactly the problem in this thread. It feels to me like nothing is direct but everything contributes.
     
  15. leafeon34
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    leafeon34 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    In Hitler's mind the people who tried to assassinate him were "bad". In my mind they were heroes.
     
  16. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    What is good and what is bad? I know of no physics based definition of the concept, much less a universal constant, and there does not appear to be any such thing.
    Or if you prefer that I not only have the word of the [deity] available to me but have actually read them and dismissed it as so much ancient bullshit means I am a thoroughly wicked dude in the eyes of some (better yet for the sake of argument I will make myself an apostate), for others it just means I am a rational human being and for them then being rational is a human ideal (humanity has rapidly changed since we left the savannahs however many millennia ago, far faster than biology can keep up with and for now at least technology has not offered a solution as much as a glimpse at some and paths to them).
    To that end good and bad stem from morals which are a human invention*, albeit ones with a basis in biology** and selected for over many many many generations.

    *there are people that would claim that morals are divinely inspired/mandated and are very ardent in this belief.

    **I am presumably descended from ones which checked behind the bush for a snake/lion/bear, shared with their community enough that they weren't booted out and so forth.

    In psychology then often the easiest way to start understanding something is to look for the damaged, the aberrations and things on the extremes. As such then killing another human seems to be a near universally reviled concept so we can start with that


    Stats vary a bit but before conditioning was invented (and if a news story here was anything to go by might well be disinvented before long for stupid reasons) some note it lines up rather well with estimates of sociopathy, though there appear to be exceptions even there (such things then becoming acts of heroism, self sacrifice or "I just wanted to get everybody home"). It has also long been recognised that making said killing a bit more abstract makes it easier in psychological terms as well as practical ones (give or take training).

    Some others in the thread described what might be known as either sociopathy or psychopathy, however in and of themselves I don't know that such things are bad. You can have high functioning sociopaths, indeed it is observed that many politicians and business types might be this -- far easier to take the risks if you don't care about your employees having to get new jobs, or start wars if you don't have to think about all the death and destruction that will come with it*.

    *I was recently looking into the German side of the North Africa campaign in world war 2. I forget the exact names and ranks but one had to fire one of his subordinates, a line noted was something along the lines of "you think too much about the well being of your men" (in military terms it is tactics vs strategy, tactics in battles (if being shot at then duck), strategy wins wars/campaigns) and the guy came back and said "I can think of no higher praise".

    Sociopaths seem to be born, raised or created through illness and injury and I can believe other variations on the theme exist ("give them to me young enough" and all that). To that end I can well believe there are people supremely suited to acting within a given moral framework, and those that can scarcely understand the concept for it ( http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BlueAndOrangeMorality covers it in a less washy means), or at least are terribly unsuited to operating within it. How moral is your moral framework -- to me the notion that you may kill, shun or otherwise really mess stuff up for an apostate is repulsive, horrific and various other related words, and I have gone out of my way to help some that suffered it in the past and happily condone efforts to undermine places and groups where it happens.
     
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  17. kuwanger

    kuwanger GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Going along with what FAST6191 said about Orange/Blue Morality and osaka35 about self-reflection, I'd say a lot of people have their own definition of good and bad for which they spend some degree of effort trying to align it with others around them and hence often choose those they wish to be around. I think few people actively choose to be bad and even more very few people actually consider themselves bad, even if they will at times call themselves a bad person.

    At some level, I think most people feel a need for a duality to decide how to act. The greater truth is many times morality and ethics are 2D or 3D (or even 4D) and even our greatest* philosophers haven't really come to any good/clear conclusions.

    * Another duality. :)
     
  18. dAVID_

    dAVID_ Carpinter's Apprentice

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    You can't objectively say someone is inherently good or bad, because morality is entirely subjective.
     
  19. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    What if they aimed to assassinate him so as to replace him?
     
  20. Tom Bombadildo

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    Greatest philosopher of our time, 10/10 :teach:

    Regarding the OP, there are no clear cut "good" or "bad" people, because what is considered "good" or "bad" depends on a person's perspective and beliefs, and I've never met anyone who only fit either definition fully.
     
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