"The people who burned witches at the stake never for one moment thought of their act as violence; rather they thought of it as an act of divinely mandated righteousness. The same can be said of most of the violence we humans have ever committed."
Gil Bailie
College Fellow at Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, author, lecturer
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Reader comments about this quote:
Yes this is true, however violence today is mostly randem acts to rob or kill for compensation in one form or another.

 -- Mark, Huntsville     
    The bombing of foreign nations is not 'random,' Mark. And the US govt justifies it year after bloody year. Zealots of all stripes will commit all forms of violence with clean consciences.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    Mark, The targeting of western world by Fundamentalist Muslim Factions is in no way random. And it is being done (misguidedly) by some who believe they operate under "divinely mandated righteousness" on average about 4 times per day all over the world. And with a hat tip to Winston Churchill I would like to say "It is a situation with which up, we shall not put".
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
    Many, I would say most acts of violence are perpetrated in the name of religion. Muslims are a good example but not the only one.
     -- jim k, Austin, Tx     
    But it raises a question: Are they wrong? It is easy to denounce acts of violence by associating them with something as insane as burning witches, but this paints too broad a swath. It is setting up a straw man argument. When one truly believes he is facing evil, does he have the option not to confront it? Failure to confront evil resulted in the Holocaust. Most acts of violence are justifiable, it just depends on which side of the argument you stand.
     -- SCSURFR, La Mirada     
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