Poetic Injustices

Nature Nurture Norms And Free Will

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by Braswell D. Deen, Jr.

Nature nurture norms, and, the utilization of a person's free will

Were once upon a time in all the  schools about equally emphasized;

Today, free will, has been labeled unscientific and unpredictable,

So in most all current curriculums it is omitted and unauthorized.

All three, deal with a person's  behavior and conduct, whether what

Happens to us occurs from instinct, acts of others choice or luck.

Nature is taught as inherited evolutionary instinctivism genetics;

Nurture, as evolutionary behaviorism, the environment, on  conduct.

Free will, is the ability in the minds of humans to make a choice,

And, under the law we are responsible, for the choices we've made.

All citizens are presumed sane, to know the law, thus any criminal

Acts committed by us, are presumed products of our will, pervades!

The  problem, with overemphasizing characteristics, of genetics is,

That it omits individual responsibility, puts blame off on others.

The same applies, to focusing too much on society and environment,

As it shifts blame to someone else, the community or our  brothers.

The truth is, genetics (nature), and environment (nurture), norms,

Are, contributing factors, as to what happens today, in our lives;

But, the central important emphasis, should be on choice, and free

Will, so the that acts and behavior good or bad are ours, survive!

Psychoanalyst Erich Fromm has written that most all of post-Darwin

Research on instinct and behavior, is based on ideas of evolution;

Contentions are, that war, crime, man's destructive behavior, are,

Phylogenetically programmed, or based on  environmental resolution.

Fromm has written, that many today such as Dr. Konrad Lorenz, have

Proclaimed evolution a new God, all worshiping Darwin, as prophet;

Lorenz, refers to mutation and selection, as "great constructors,"

With a true confession, "I believe, I believe."; A pagan's profit?

Nietzsche is known as "the child of Darwin," argued that evolution

Worked toward, birth of a superman, who was above obeying the law;

Clarence Darrow, in defending both Loeb and Leopold, in the bloody

Murder of 14-year old Bobby Franks,  used nature-nurture awe & jaw!

Leopold's idol had been Nietzsche; He thought he too, was superman

Above, the laws. Darrow argued to the court: "This terrible crime,

Was inherent in his organism and came from some ancestor," or from

Training and education after his birth. Here'ws no reason or rhyme!

Pediatrician, Benjamin Spock, has said: "Crime is not the fault of

Criminals, but of society." And our Attorney General Ramsey, Clark

Said:"We are not yet so far from the jungle that self-preservation

Has ceased to be our basic instinct."   These words, we must mark!

Inner City Mother Goose, (Simon & Schuster), used, at one time, in

The 3rd grade, and reads: "Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, snap the

Blade, and give it a flick, grab the purse, its easily done, just,

For kicks, just for fun, plunge the knife, and cut and run." Sick?

Situation Ethics, co-authored by Joseph Fletcher, page 13, advises

"In some situations theft, is the right thing to do." Now if youth

Are told they are animals and its o.k. to steal  then drugs, crime,

Permissiveness, blaming others all follows and become their truth!

Values Clarification, as authored by Simon, Howe and Kirschenbaum,

Provides techniques and strategies of doing "whatever feels good."

Values and ideas of right and wrong, and of "moralizing adults" is

Taboo. Only prizing, cherishing, and choosing freely, is the food.

Those, "forced-choice Ladders," "privacy circles," "epitaphs," and

"Obituary," strategy has options, of pre-marital sex, and suicide.

And strategy Number 50, "Alligator River," has rape as a solution;

"Number 48, "The Fallout-Shelter Problem," may, sanction homicide!

Students are encouraged, to choose one of several options, some  of

Which if done in real life are illegal, violate the Criminal Code.

They might conclude, that school officials and curriculums approve

Their prizing of drugs, theft and affirming all this illegal load.

What really should be brought to their attention are cases such as

United States v. Holmes (26 Fed. Cas. 360), and unusual 1842 case,

Where the captain and crew, sacrificed lives, of their passengers,

Drowning them in water and foam; surely this was way way off base.

Now  it's true that the ship William Brown was leaking and sinking,

And they plead in good faith they were trying to lighten the load;

But the court ruled on "Homicide by Seamen," they could not claim,

Exemption, from drawing straws, from the common lot, of the  abode.

The crew was prosecuted for homicide tossing victims overboard and

Sacrificing lives of others, the captain, put in the penitentiary;

This case demonstrates, we cannot choose freely, to play fast and,

Loose with these homicide games. Let's obey the law, this century!

In summary, curriculums in school textbooks, must reemphasize free

Will; that is, we make choices and are responsible for those made.

We should, deemphasize nature, nurture, norms, as, to our conduct.

Using the idea of genetics and the environment to blame must fade.

Teaching in classrooms on theories other than ape animal evolution

Is in order, and a good solution. Also, ideas of, right and wrong,

All outlined in our juvenile and criminal code, are most in order.

Crime curriculum causes & cures must be discussed before too long!

Braswell Deen