English 11 Period 4
23 March 2017
Humanity: Kind or Cruel?
Human morals have always been seen from different perspectives. Over the years researchers have explored many aspects pertaining to cruelty. Friedrich Nietzsche once said, “The world is beautiful, but has a disease called man” what he means by this is that humans are the worst types of animal, they cause of destruction in this world, and only care for themselves. Therefore humanity is cruel.
Great Thinkers such as Sigmund Freud, Thomas Hobbes and Mark Twain believed humans were cruel. Sigmund Freud became largely knowing of the human species and considered them one of the worst types of animals. In his book, Civilizations and its Discontents, he wrote “…men are not gentle creatures, who want to be loved, who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness.” Hundreds of years before Freud, philosopher Thomas Hobbes had a similarly pessimistic view of humanity and famously wrote that the life of man in his natural state is, “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” Essentially, he believed all men were equally capable of killing, and when two people want the same thing the necessary outcome is war. In his mind, government and civil society were the only ways to break inhumanity, yet he admitted that even governments were full of corruption. In Mark Twain’s essay, “The Lowest Animal” he uses human action and behavior to prove his belief that people are not superior to any other animal. When talking about some of his theories Twain writes, “They killed seventy two of those great animals; and ate part of one of them and left the seventy-one to rot.” This quote proves that human beings only care about themselves. Hunting was a form of entertainment for these people. And instead of cleaning up after themselves, they leave them to rot as if the animals were never alive in the first place. Twain then states that not all animals behave like humans by proposing that, “The grateful reptile immediately crushed one of them and swallowed it, then lay back satisfied. It showed no further interest in the calves, and no disposition to harm them.” The reptile killed all the calves like the humans had. Not only are humans being wasteful, but they’re also being cruel. As Twain phrased it, “[Man] is the only one that inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it.” Man knows he is hurting others, and yet continues to do so. Other animals do not intentionally try to hurt their prey because they want to. They are unaware of what they’re playing with is in pain. Human cruelty has also been repeated through the acts of slavery. Humans are the only animal who enslave others, whether it be his own species or one he believes would be lower than himself. Despite the fact that humans are believed to be the highest animal, their actions show that not...