[ExI] yet another ethical dilemma

PJ Manney pjmanney at gmail.com
Thu Sep 5 15:29:56 UTC 2013

On Thu, Sep 5, 2013 at 12:58 AM, BillK <pharos at gmail.com> wrote:
> "The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there".
> We cannot apply modern standards of behaviour to the past. Even the
> 1960s-70s was very different from today. Far less centuries ago.
> We are here now because our ancestors did what was necessary to
> survive, even in the most brutal savage circumstances. The choice you
> face is non-existence because your ancestors didn't manage to survive.

Excellent point.  In the case of my family, abandonment could even be
considered a social norm at the time.  While my paternal grandfather
was still an SOB (I have lots of outside confirmation on this point),
he was only one of many men who abandoned their families in the 1930s.
 I do not believe his abandonment was due to financial issues as much
as personal issues, but the level of family abandonment during the
Great Depression was staggering.  They called it "Poor Man's Divorce."
 My maternal grandfather financially abandoned my mother's family
around the same time, although he hung around to get what he could
from them.

None of this was unusual at the time.  Just like rape is horrifyingly
"normal" in times of war.  Which is, again, why I'm so surprised at
Spike's response.

Tell your cousin.  You won't be telling her anything unusual from a
genealogical perspective.  Maybe you should watch this show and see
how even these people have rapists, murderers, abandoners, etc. in
their families: http://www.tlc.com/tv-shows/who-do-you-think-you-are
Even more interesting: like all families, these celebrities have been
told family stories of how wonderful their ancestors are, only to find
out the truth is something else entirely.  :-)


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list