Frank Bruni in the NY Times writes “Weary of Relativity“:
“SAY anything critical about a person or an organization and brace for this pushback: At least he, she or it isn’t as bad as someone or something else.
Set the bar low enough and all blame is deflected, all shame expunged. Choose the right points of reference and behold the alchemy: naughty deeds into humdrum conformity. Excess into restraint. Sinners into saints.
Like I said, you can set the bar anywhere you want.
And you can justify almost anything by pointing fingers at people who are acting likewise or less nobly.
Except it’s not.
There are standards to which government, religion and higher education should be held. There are examples that politicians and principled businesspeople should endeavor to set, regardless of whether their peers are making that effort. There’s right and wrong, not just better or worse.
And there’s a word for recognizing and rising to that: leadership. We could use more of it.”
Don’t miss Bruni’s entire Op-Ed essay: “Weary of Relativity“