It seems like every student copies other’s homework and to some students it seems as if teachers don’t care if students cheat. And so, the copying proceeds without a thought or care. The assignment is turned in with the confident hope of a perfect score. The over-inflated grade point average is maintained, along with the future hope for admission into a prestigious college and, ultimately, a posh job. Given this mentality, pervasive among students and parents, the recent college admissions scandal should hardly come as a surprise. When the moral and social order is severed from the sacred order, as it is in our disenchanted age, then why not cheat and manipulate the admissions system in order to secure your child’s spot in their college of choice? If happiness, consists in the unfettered satisfaction of desire, as is widely thought, then why not, once in college, continue to cheat, manipulate, and pay your way through in order to graduate?
Why not indeed? There are at least three problems with this behavior and the mindset that supports it. Given the outrage directed toward those rich and famous celebrities and business owners who have allegedly manipulated the system to benefit their own aims, many see at least one of the problems: the injustice of it all. When the ‘haves’ steal the spots of the ‘have nots’ by bribing their child’s way into an elite university, others who are worthy of admittance on their own merit will be left out. This is unjust. It is wrong. It is theft over honest toil. But there are other problems, too, and in order to see them, we need a clear picture of the moral life. We need to recapture a vision of human flourishing that is actually true to the way things are.”
This Postmodern Realities podcast episode is a conversation with Journal author Paul Gould about his Christian Research Journal online exclusive feature article “Conscience, Justice, Morality, and the College Admissions Scandal.”
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