Have We Lost Our Sense of Shame?

Diane Ravitch's blog

In reflecting on the sordid Anthony Weiner story, I wrote that civilization depends to some extent on the survival of a sense of shame. Shame makes people regretful of bad behavior and minimizes such behavior. Too much shame might be a bad thing, but none at all leaves us at the mercy of the whims and desires of others.

This reader thinks we are losing any sense of shame:

“We are witnessing the death of shame in this country (and maybe globally). Name anything reprehensible that someone in power has done and I’ll find a line of people vociferously defending it. Kill an unarmed teenager? Flash your junk to unknown women? Lie to Congress? Drone bomb civilians (even American citizens)? Bankrupt the country with toxic mortgage swaps? Not a problem. Now, of course, if you’re an ordinary citizen who doesn’t get off the street fast enough during a protest, well…

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