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Right and Wrong Inescapable

The effects of virtue-free social policy have been devastating--but we don't seem quite ready to accept the alternative. Few politicians are comfortable about using words like "right" and "wrong," especially when the subject is sexual irresponsibility (which remains the surest predictor of criminality, ill health and welfare dependency among the poor). ... In fact, it isn't easy. It requires the fortitude to sometimes cast people into the outer darkness. ...

It has become near impossible for a polity as rights-conscious, and tolerant, as ours to admit that some people who behave badly, if not quite criminally, aren't worthy of our support--to kick them off welfare, or out of schools and housing projects. But it is inescapable; the system can't work without sanctions--even if they require the sort of stiff, humorless, un-American propriety that gave morality such a bad name.

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