The Tools of Conquest

The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosives and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill, and suspicion can destroy. And a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own.

–Rod Serling

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3 Comments on “The Tools of Conquest”

  1. gerry rosser Says:

    Interesting quote, I don’t believe prejudices can kill (or suspicion destroy). For one person to kill another requires an individual act of will, a decision. While the person making the decision may indeed have prejudices, they are just (probably partial) motivators. I’m sure there are lots of racists (or other haters) who have never killed anyone. I understand Mr. Serling was just making a point, but I believe individual decision-making should never be ignored, meaning individual responsibility. I just shuddered when Law & Order (or Lawn Order as I call it) had a case where the defense was “insanity” based upon virulent racism. Racism (and its pals) does not force anyone to do anything, and is not able to keep someone from distinguishing right from wrong. Again, I do understand the style of discourse Mr. Serling was using, I’m just making my point.

  2. Kathryn Says:

    I do appreciate your point. I agree that actions are the responsibility of the individual to took them. The quote caught my eye because it spoke to me about the overarching power of culture, and the way prejudice, when exercised at that level, can destroy so many lives.

    I like that show too — though I call is Law & Odor, because sometimes the outcome stinks.

  3. gerry rosser Says:

    It is unsurprising that I watch Lawn Order with a lawyer’s eye. I find it mildly amusing that this show strays so far from court rules and procedures to be entertaining. But that’s neither here nor there. What I like mostly about the show is that unlike almost every other TV drama, it does not devolve into a soap opera (meaning there’s very little of the outside lives of our protagonists, no divorce crap, affairs, etc.). I don’t think a good drama needs that stuff. Of course, TV is a medium run on ratings, and, like pop music radio, everything tends to be the same, because if someone tries to stand out, they might not succeed, and copying at least has little risk.