Suddenly a number of people have rediscovered ethics. In recent months Americans have been deluged with information about wrong-doing by people in high places. In the unfolding of events the question of right and wrong has surfaced in a provocative manner.
The Watergate disclosures created waves of disgust, the ripples of which are still with us. Among those who most fervently flogged the offenders were some who in their own actions were also transgressors. They called upon a higher morality only to justify their own actions and to salve their consciences. The hands of the one who stole the Pentagon papers and of those who published them were not that much cleaner than the hands of Nixon, Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Colson (whose story of repentance and conversion is featured in this issue of CHRISTIANITY TODAY.)
Wrongful corporate contributions to politicians and political campaigns are another category of dark doing that has recently come to light. The executives who made these decisions knew they were breaking the law. But the politicians and their aides who sought and accepted such contributions knew they too were breaking the law. Should we not call to account the receivers as well as the givers? Some of these disclosures occasioned the reference by Ray Garrett, Jr., former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, to “bribery, influence-peddling and corruption on a scale I had never dreamed existed.”
Then the public heard about the corporate bribery by some American businessmen who sell their products overseas. Right now certain Japanese are feeling the heat of the money given them by Lockheed in an effort to increase the sale of its planes to Japan. In the Opinion Research Corporation’s survey among more than ...1
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