Which one will you choose?
A group of children were playing near two railway tracks, one still in
use while the other disused. Only one child played on the disused
track, the rest on the operational track. The train came, and you were
just beside the track interchange. You could make the train change its
course to the disused track and saved most of the kids.
However, that would also mean the lone child playing by the disused
track would be sacrificed. Or would you rather let the train go its way?
Most people might choose to divert the course of the train, and
sacrifice only one child. You might think the same way, I guess.
Exactly, I thought the same way initially because to save most of the
children at the expense of only one child was rational decision most
people would make, morally and emotionally. But, have you ever thought
that the child choosing to play on the disused track had in fact made
the right decision to play at a safe place?
Nevertheless, he had to be sacrificed because of his ignorant friends
who chose to play where the danger was. This kind of dilemma happens
around us everyday. In the office, community, in politics and
especially in a democratic society, the minority is often sacrificed
for the interest of the majority, no matter how foolish or ignorant the
majority are, and how farsighted and knowledgeable the minority are.
The child who chose not to play with the rest on the operational track
was sidelined. And in the case he was sacrificed, no one would shed a
tear for him.
The friend who forwarded me the story said he would not try to change
the course of the train because he believed that the kids playing on
the operational track should have known very well that track was still
in use,and that they should have run away if they heard the train's sirens.
If the train was diverted, that lone child would definitely die because
he never thought the train could come over to that track! Moreover,
that track was not in use probably because it was not safe. If the
train was diverted to the track, we could put the lives of all passengers on board at stake!
And in your attempt to save a few kids by sacrificing one child, you
might end up sacrificing hundreds of people to save these few kids.
While we are all aware that life is full of tough decisions that need
to be made, we may not realize that hasty decisions may not always be
the right one.
"Remember that what's right isn't always popular... and what's popular
isn't always right."
(courtesy of Dominic)