The Golden Rule

By Mark Trodden | August 29, 2007 10:44 pm

I know it seems obvious, but two of today’s news stories brought home the absurdity of how people are judged.

On the one hand we have a Republican (who would have guessed?) Senator who is accused of soliciting sex in an airport men’s bathroom.

On the other is this priceless story about legislating against the wearing of too baggy clothes.

What is striking is that I don’t think the first should be news except that the Senator in question consistently votes against gay rights and gay marriage. His fellow Senators seem concerned with the actual behavior, which I think is irrelevant, and unconcerned with his hypocrisy, which I think is abhorrent.

But the individuals involved in the second story seem to ignore completely the behavior of the persons wearing the dangerously low-riding jeans. Even those defending these loose-legged louts seem to miss the point:

“The focus should be on cleaning up the social conditions that the sagging pants comes out of,”

No, the focus should be on how they behave, not on what they wear.

Being a good citizen is about how you behave to others – what rights you support or try to deny them, or how you treat them – not about how you choose to meet sexual partners or about how you dress.


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Cosmic Variance

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About Mark Trodden

Mark Trodden holds the Fay R. and Eugene L. Langberg Endowed Chair in Physics and is co-director of the Center for Particle Cosmology at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a theoretical physicist working on particle physics and gravity— in particular on the roles they play in the evolution and structure of the universe. When asked for a short phrase to describe his research area, he says he is a particle cosmologist.


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