When is Acting Morally an Immoral Act

DovBear has put forth a series of responses to what he calls Dumb arguments regarding the disengagement.

They made me think some more about a question that I have regarding the disengagement and life in general.

When is acting morally an immoral act.

I don’t have time to construct a long post so I am going to just wing this for a moment. If the disengagement has discouraged diplomacy and encouraged violence then I am gravely concerned.

IMO the Palestinans should be given self-rule. Israel cannot and should not continue to be placed in a position in which it is forced to govern a people in the current manner. I am ignoring the question of whether they deserve a state given that they never had one and that their historical claims are rather tenuous because it is more practical to move beyond that point.

Self-rule and governance does a number of things one of which is in theory it forces them to take responsiblity for what happens to their people. If they remain embroiled in third world antics and governed by corrupt dictators that is their problem. If their people continue to engage in acts of violence it provides a body/leadership that can be held accountable.

Returning more specifically to the question of whether you can be immoral while trying to act morally I would say that the crux of the matter is whether this particular action leads to a decrease in violence or an increase in violence.

Theoretically removing Israeli citizens is designed to alleviate stress upon limited resources so that they may be reallocated to other places that have a greater need for them. To a certain extent you could say that the presence of these people in Gaza was similar to waving a red flag at a bull.

So the theory should hold that without this presence it should lessen anger and decrease the violence.

However almost everything I have read from the PA, Hamas and Islamic Jihad suggests that this is not the case and that the disengagement is encouraging them to continue to use violence to gain concessions and from that perspective I think that one can make a case that the moral action is immoral because it leads to a path of violence.



This story lends more credence to the problems I have with the disengagement.

“The United Nations is embroiled in a dispute with American Jewish organizations over the funding of Palestinian banners in Gaza, and U.S. Ambassador John Bolton on Wednesday protested the “unacceptable” payments.

The dispute centers on the UN Development Program’s payment for materials produced by the Palestinian Authority for Israel’s disengagement from Gaza which include banners saying: “Gaza Today. The West Bank and Jerusalem Tomorrow.”

The American Jewish Congress protested in a letter Monday to the Development Program’s new administrator, Kemal Dervis, that UNDP was paying for Palestinian “propaganda” when the future status of the West Bank and Jerusalem are still disputed.”

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