The Wisdom of Dostoevsky’s Father Zossima and Current Political Rhetoric
There has been a lot of finger-pointing from the political left and right in response to the shooting last weekend of congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (and many others) but little in the way of taking responsibility for our own words and actions. Contrast The Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz who states “there are crazy people out there, but we can’t all be responsible for what they do” with what Tucson resident Michele Brubaker told a reporter: “I’m here for Tucson. This should not be happening … we’re all responsible. We have to do something.” Her reaction echoes the words Fyodor Dostoevsky ascribes to Father Zossima in The Brothers Karamazov that we are “each of us responsible for everyone.”
How would our political rhetoric (and personal or “private” behavior) change if we held to the belief that we have a responsibility for everyone and everything?