Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Torture, what does it really achieve?

I state that fear and pain are not great in the face of truth.

This statement, if taken to be true, can allow one to see that the fear of being wrong deminishes into -risk taking- rather than destructive behavior. When one knows that anything they 'know' could be proven wrong, yet they persist in their current understanding until proven otherwise, they are taking a risk. This very risk allows them to act and learn.

When this process- of the development of an understanding- is not recognized, then being wrong or right develops negatively into an environment that allows for polorazied communication, where neither party feels able/willing to assume (an awareness of) the (inherent) risk in knowing. This lack of awareness of the nature of "understanding" makes way for destructive behavior, seemingly excusing all violent acts in the name of truth. _when conflct is seen as violence, then violence is justified in "solving" conflict._ (paraphrasing Arnett).

When the goal of interaction is to procure some higher understanding, presumably truth - one can, see that communication must be a process of genuine listening, with the intention of understanding, not with the intention of deriving some predetermined type of information.

Primateively, one can see how another could be viewed as merely a means to an end, yet this definition of the purpose of the other doesn't seem to be sufficient.

I see conflict as an indicator of something to be discovered, allowing this "other" to not only help discover something to be explored, but to see them as useful in the discovery.

Inherent in seeing another as a means, you are expressing that they have something needed, and thus that _they_ are needed. (Though, I can see how this feels slightly empty. Is there something... beyond the fact that we have the ability to evolve constantly, making us communicators/learners... that could make us intrinsically valuable?)

We, as humans, seem to desire confirmation from others- whether this desire is logical or not I do not know. In the desire for the confirmation of our person as needed/valued we, likely, must feel the confirmation logically and emotionally. We desire to be understood.

I can see that -torture- can be "useful" in getting facts from someone through force, facts such as, a date that someone was shot, etcetera. But not only does torture deny the other any confirmation, the torture is imposed with the intention of deriving specific types of information. So even the "facts" discovered may be uncovered under incorrect pretenses, the context may be completely skewed, leaving the confessor in a position where they have given truths amidst falsity. This isn't communication.

(Why should facts have to be derived from someone by force? The need for the force itself implies a larger communication issue.)

Torture sees the other as a means to an end, the end being information, but does not allow for the other to develop a new understanding. Communication does not ensue through torture, rather it seems to instill an even stronger sense of objectification in both parties participating.

I'm inclined to say that force is never justified. (Though I think I am also willing, somewhat confusidely, to say that if my brothers life were in danger I would likely use force, and many different means I found necessary to remove him from the danger.)

I feel that all of these issues that would seem to preclude the "need" for torture,for the justification of violence, there lays a deep issue relating to the way we view truth, and thus the way we view others.

I see that facts and "truths" that are derived from someone forcibly, are subpar to true communication where both are in a position to --peacefully-- gain a new understanding.

The example of the man who recieved cookies, demonstrates all of this perfectly.
Yeah maybe it is rediculous that we feel, or maybe that is what makes all of this life worth living.
But we as humans, we do feel, and we care, and we are imperfect, living in a world of knowledge scarcirty.
Because of this, I see torture as only mans sick excuse to procure information that could be achieved in another fashion, another fashion that would have allowed both parties the potential for a new understanding

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