Sunday, January 01, 2017

Day 2: Sting

Sting makes crazy lyrics sometimes. He has this song  about the seven brothers who killed the bandits in pursuit of a wife. It turned out, however, that there was only one senorita so the singer killed his six brothers so he can keep the wife for himself , and then the refrain goes "Love is stronger than justice. Love is thicker than blood. Love is stronger than justice. Love is a big fat river in flood." I mean in another context love is indeed stronger than justice, but to be singing that in a song about  sibling rivalry that ends in six murders, it is a peculiar insanity that only a rock icon can get away with. Yet, the sentence is begging to be plucked out of the Sting song, and probably to give it more dimension, substitute stronger with greater and  one should say, "Love is greater than justice." Ayan, nevermind that justice is an essentially-contested concept, because as an ethical value, it still is -- no matter what the lawyers say -- less than love. Jesus Christ said, "Render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar's" which is similar to what Plato said in the Republic, that is -- justice is doing one's role in society. But when asked what is the greatest commandment of God, Christ spoke only of love -- love for God and love for one's neighbor as one loves himself/herself. And indeed, a society that functions purely on the performance of one's duty, without the emotive value of love, is not quite the kind of republic fit for humans. Hence, love is greater than justice. It's amazing Sting manages to inject that wisdom in a song about murders. "Love is a big fat river in flood."

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