Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Good Guys/Bad Guys

Sadly, much of our decision making is based on reducing complex issues into good guys/bad guys scenarios. We like to think that we gather information, weigh arguments and make rational choices, but it really boils down to what we think good guys or bad guys would do.

This is explicit in statements like NRA President Wayne LaPierre’s assertion that “the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.” Not only has this belief been disproved time and again in active shooter situations, but a very large proportion of gun deaths are due to accident or suicide. Are those good guys or bad guys?

Similarly, Alabama voters cling so strongly to their belief that Democrats are bad guys that they’re willing to accept a known child molester as a comparatively “good” guy.

In other words, we suck at making decisions. No matter how complex the issues, we are incapable of thinking of anything more nuanced than a Star Wars movie.