Lifestyles: Q&A: Right and Wrong!

Lifestyles: Q&A: Right and Wrong!
Posted by FoM on August 08, 1999 at 09:12:21 PT
August 7, 1999
Source: Sacramento Bee
Q: Do you think an undercover drug agent who befriends young people under false pretenses and later arrests them or uses them to arrest others is acting morally?
WHO: Beth M. Appelsmith, attorney, Harris Law Firm.ANSWER: An undercover drug agent is basically in the business of betraying people. The agent lies about who he is and becomes involved in drug transactions to help arrest those who really are buying and selling drugs. Without undercover agents and informants, law enforcement would have extremely limited means of locating and prosecuting drug dealers and users. Our society has decided that the deception involved is justified, because it is an effective tool against the distribution of illegal drugs.If the undercover agent performs his job duties "by the book," I do not see this as a moral issue. The potential for abuse of the agent's position is the real concern. An overzealous agent may bend or break the rules and abuse the position of trust in a way that amounts to entrapment. Children and teens are especially vulnerable to this type of manipulation, because they are frequently naive and susceptible to the pressures of friends and peers. This same susceptibility means they can often be persuaded to experiment with drugs. The job of the undercover agent should be primarily to stop the dealers and not to use his position of trust or influence to arrest any young person who may merely have experimented with drugs.WHO: The Rev. Mike Andrakowicz, pastor, Berean Baptist Church.ANSWER: I'm sure the bad guys don't think so. Yet both morally and legally, law enforcement officers have no obligation to reveal their intentions or tactics to the criminals they pursue. Their moral obligation is defined primarily by their duty to protect society from lawless, dangerous and destructive people. In fact, the Apostle Paul calls them ministers (i.e. servants) of God, "avengers who bring wrath upon the one who practices evil" (Rom. 13:4). They are God's appointed agents of justice for the preservation of society.Nothing could be more immoral than for their success in this essential task to be fettered with the ball and chain of excessive restriction. Nothing would be more dangerous for the rest of us. Is it immoral for our military to use "deceptive" battle tactics with the enemy in a war? Or for us to "deceive" burglars by leaving the lights on when we are not home at night? Similarly, the laws of our society rightfully permit the "deception" of speed traps, hidden cameras, sting operations, etc. by law enforcement officers.WHO: Joey Garcia, spiritual director and advice columnist.ANSWER: Yes. If we believe that it takes a village to raise a child, then we are agreeing that other adults have a right to participate in teaching children the laws and social codes by which we have agreed to live in a community. If parents, for whatever reason, fail to impart these laws and social codes to their children either directly or through involvement in a religion, schools offer a second opportunity for learning. Peers, neighbors and mentors can also offer instruction in behavior that supports an interdependent society. If an individual remains inclined toward illegal activities, it is within the job description of law enforcement officers to wake the person up.I wouldn't define this as being befriended under false pretenses. On a spiritual level, this undercover drug agent's action is in service of a young person's wholeness. The agent's task is kin to the spiritual guides common in mythological stories of the hero's journey, wherein the guide lies to the hero in an effort to motivate the hero to discover his or her true potential.(Published Aug. 7, 1999) Copyright  The Sacramento Bee
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Comment #4 posted by jeff christen-mitche on August 12, 1999 at 06:02:55 PT:
Ends Justifing Means
If there were any biblical justification for the drug war we would know of it. There isn't. On the contrary, Crist said it's not what goeth into a man's mouth that decieveth but what comes out of a man's mouth.No wonder the Littleton massacres keep occuring. Religion is phony and empty. Dare lies to kids every day. Who wouldn't feel lost and angry. There are no moral compasses the young can hang their trust on. 
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Comment #3 posted by Ally on August 09, 1999 at 09:54:31 PT
What a crock of bull..
And to think that there are children out there that believe this...and are exposed to an undercover agent in the first place! Have things gotten so bad, they have to bother minors?? I think not. Everybody has to meet quota's for their damn job security that's part of it...Also, they have to concock a way to say that the WoD's is actually working! Kind of a smokescreen if you will for the eager voters who lay in wait for another "drug" arrest...Such a load of crap!! 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on August 09, 1999 at 07:59:10 PT:
It Annoyed Me Too!
This annoyed me too! We teach children to be trusting and then they are manipulated and we wonder why kids are so angry. This is one reason why.
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Comment #1 posted by Herb on August 08, 1999 at 23:09:29 PT
this annoyed me
It's going to take a whole village to change...
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