For centuries philosophers have been arguing whether men are inherently good or

For centuries, philosophers have been arguing whether men are inherently good or evil. The debate is quite controversial and the opposing arguments should be considered before formulating an opinion. One side believes that man is born naturally good and credits society for stripping humanity of its natural state. They presume that men are all innocent until corruption is imposed and persuades them towards evil. The opposition, however, considers man to possess natural evil tendencies since birth. A person that is “inherently evil” is best defined as naturally lacking morals; purposely choosing to hurt others to attain personal pleasures. Authors Bradbury, Plato, and Weir prove that human beings are inherently evil in their texts, “The Veldt,” “The Allegory of the Cave” and The Truman Show. Their stories illustrate how characters make choices based on their own well-being regardless of the impact it may have on others. Their actions are solely based on inconsiderate desires as is evident in the children’s cruel plan in “The Veldt,” the lower world’s glutinous behavior in “The Allegory of the Cave,” and the producer’s ambition to air the show for so many years in The Truman Show. “The Veldt,” “The Allegory of the Cave,” and The Truman Show reveal that men are innately evil because they are driven by selfishness, greed, and power, leading them to make unethical decisions.Humanity is motivated by their selfish attitude because of their inherent evil tendencies; they are primarily concerned with their own personal gains without regard to others and therefore make unethical decisions. Bradbury reveals that mankind’s evil tendencies strongly influence their self-absorbed behavior through the development of self-centered characters that enhance man’s egotistical nature, which causes them to make unethical decisions. In “The Veldt,” Peter and Wendy can not live without their high-tech nursery; when their parents shut it off, they throw a temper tantrum to force them to change their minds: “The two children in hysterics. They screamed and pranced and threw things. They yelled and sobbed and swore and jumped at the furniture… He [Peter] turned to his father. ‘Oh, I hate you!’…‘I wish you were dead!’” (Bradbury 23). The children are only concerned with themselves and care more about their nursery than their parents. When faced with having their favorite possession temporarily removed from their lives, they overreact and have a fit rather than try to understand why their parents are choosing to shut the nursery off. Peter and Wendy defy their moral obligations to obey their parents when they do not get their way and choose to become destructive and insult them. Their innate evil instincts take over all logic. Their self-centered nature makes their “toy” more important than their parents. Plato suggests that man’s inherent evil entices his egocentric desires through Socrates’ teachings which highlight humanity’s opportunistic tendencies and steer man to make unethical choices. In “The Allegory of the Cave,” Socrates shares his thoughts about man’s natural selfish ways with Glaucon stating, “you will not misapprehend me if you interpret the journey upwards to be the soul into the intellectual world… you must not wonder that those who attain to this beatific vision are unwilling to descend to human affairs,” (Plato 453). Plato believes that reaching the upper world sheds light on all truths. It is an intellectual world filled with wisdom. When people ascend into the upper world they live happily and pity those in the lower world. Once wisdom is attained, people have an ethical obligation to descend to the lower world and help others see the light, however, their innate selfish tendencies cause them to want to remain in the upper world and not descend to the darkness. Their selfish tendencies, according to Plato, are very natural because man is inherently evil and prefers what is best for him over the greater good. Weir demonstrates that man’s instinctive evil ignites humankind’s craving for personal advancement through the story’s setting which controls Truman and results in unethical behavior. In an interview with the producer on The Truman Show, he proudly speaks about keeping Truman in a controlled environment throughout his life stating, “As Truman grew up we were forced to manufacture ways to keep him on the island,” (Weir 1:04:05). Seahaven Island was specifically designed to be Truman’s home and actors were hired to play a role in his life such as his parents, wife, best friend, etc. The entire setting was calculated with the best lighting and hidden cameras in order to capture Truman’s genuine experiences for the television show. He was the only “true person” living in a world of fiction simply because the corporation wanted to make money off of the television series. Man’s innate evil was the driving force behind the corporation’s selfish choice to control Truman for the sake of the success of their television show.Mankind is driven by greed as a result of their innate evil disposition; they have an intense desire for materialistic things that consequently guide them to act unethically. Bradbury validates that man’s deep thirst for possessions is inspired by their inherent evil through the children’s actions which lead them to behave immorally. In “The Veldt,” Peter and Wendy enjoy materialistic things and do not handle being denied their wishes very well: ‘“They’ve been acting funny ever since you forbade them to take the rocket to New York,’…‘You aren’t going to lock up the nursery for good, are you?’ ‘I don’t think you’d better consider it any more, Father,”’(Bradbury 19). The children are so spoiled and reliant on always getting their way that when their parents say “no” they retaliate. Peter is not making eye contact with his parents simply because he is angry. His dislike for not getting his way goes as far as threatening his father to leave the nursery alone. The children’s greed to always get what they want is motivated by their inherent evil and causes them to ignore ethics and ultimately kill their parents to avoid being separated from their beloved possessions. Plato exemplifies that man’s inherent evil provokes an urge for gluttony through his commentary about the evils of the lower world which express the preference for self- indulgence over making moral choices. In “The Allegory of the Cave,” Socrates explains that man’s innate evil drags him into the world of darkness by questioning how different the outcome would be if he were stripped of the evil, he states that a clever rogue “is forced into the service of evil…But what if…they had been severed from those sensual pleasure, such as eating and drinking, which, like leaden weights, were attached to them at their births,” (Plato 455). Plato suggests that man was born evil and his innate tendencies cause him to be greedy and succumb to sensual pleasures that exist in the darkness. Man’s choice to indulge in the sensual pleasures of the lower world prevents him from ascending into the upper world. It is easier to enjoy evils such as eating and drinking than turn away from them; ultimately persuading man to choose what is wrong but feels good. Weir suggests that man’s innate evil feeds his possessive desire for success through the characters’ aspirations for fame and television ratings which lead them to make unethical decisions. The producer in The Truman Show gives himself credit for the success of the television show, when asked by Truman who he is he states, “I am the creator of a TV show that gives hope and joy to millions…You are the star…Listen to me, there is no more truth out there than there is in the world I created for you,” (Weir 1:32:27). Cristof wants the television show to succeed as do all the cast members because the outcome is profitable for all parties, except for Truman. When the producer refers to himself as the “creator” of Truman’s world, he is greedily taking ownership of it. Keeping Truman unaware that he was the star of the series made him “real” which attracted the audience and increased ratings. The characters and the producer made an unethical decision to lie to Truman in order to advance their own careers. Their innate evil tendencies caused them to be greedy and keep Truman in the dark in order for the television show to prosper.Humanity’s evil predisposition fosters their hunger for power; they maneuver the course of events to benefit their personal cravings at the expense of their principles. Bradbury shows that man’s innate evil drives his yearning for power through the description of the children’s deep love for technology which ultimately causes unethical decisions to be made. At the end of the “The Veldt,” the children decide to overpower their parents for restricting them from their nursery: “‘Open the door!’ cried George Hadley, trying the knob. ‘Why, they’ve locked it from the outside! Peter!’…‘Open up!’ He heard Peter’s voice outside, against the door. ‘Don’t let them switch off the nursery and the house,’ he was saying,” (Bradbury 26). Peter and Wendy created an African veldt theme in the nursery filled with ferocious lions to kill their parents. They prefer to live alone in their smart house with all of the luxuries they enjoy rather than co-exist with their parents that are restricting them of what they love most in the world, technology. Their inherent evil aroused a desire for power and control that blinded them of all ethics and led them to commit murder in the name of technology. Plato explains that man’s innate evil sparks his attraction for power through his narrative about the actions of the rulers in other states that lead them to make unethical decisions. In “The Allegory of the Cave,” Socrates describes the effects of the evil that takes place with rulers in other states fighting with one another about mere shadows: “[They] are distracted in the struggle for power, which in their eyes is a great good…if they go…poor and hungering after their own private advantage…will be the ruin of the rulers themselves and of the whole State,” (Plato 457). Socrates disagrees with the way the rulers are governing their state because he feels that the best kind of ruler is a philosopher that does not get blinded by the ignorant man’s urge for power. He claims that man’s innate evil causes him to strive for authority over the greater good and waste time arguing about fictional shadows because he can not see the realistic truths necessary to run a state. His hunger for power and innate evil causes him to make unethical decisions that in turn will lead to his own destruction and that of the state. Weir emphasizes that humanity’s inherent evil drives their aspiration for power through the characters’ actions to manipulate Truman and gain control over him which in turn causes them to make unethical decisions. In The Truman Show, Marlon tries to convince Truman that he is being paranoid when he confesses his feeling that the whole world revolves around him: “That’s a lot of world for one man Truman, you sure that it’s not wishful thinking? You wishing you made more of yourself?” (Weir 55:27) Marlon along with the entire cast constantly try to manipulate Truman to keep him from finding out the truth. Controlling Truman gives them power over him and ensures that the show remains on air which in turn keeps them rich and famous. Their desire for power leads them to lie to Truman and persuade him away from discovering the truth. Man’s innate evil to want control overpowers ethics and in the end hurts Truman. It is evident that all three texts support the opinion that man’s innate evil strongly impacts his actions and fosters a selfish attitude, greedy disposition, and an impulse for power which in turn negatively influence the ethical decisions made. The world consists of personal desires taking precedence over the well-being of others due to man’s inherent evil. As a result, morality is often compromised. Perhaps it would be wise for man to consider that although he can not help being inherently evil, he can acknowledge his faults and work towards good by being conscientious of his moral obligations to society and always striving to be his best.

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