Excuses and Justification


Sadly, these two words I witness in action repeatedly, and unfortunately, this has caused a certain amount of intolerance in me.


In court, an excuse defence concentrates on the actor rather than the act. It accepts the act may have harmed society in some way, but seeks to show that the person is not really to blame. Excuses may show that the person’s choice was limited and that the ‘right’ alternative was not available.


Justification is about giving ‘reasonable reason’ for what was done (or not). It considers the context and concludes that fair play was served. In court, a justification defence concentrates on the act rather than the actor. It shows the act to be beneficial to society in some way. It shows it as sensible and just and what a good person would do. It offers exonerating circumstances that say ‘It was right to do this in this particular situation.

Now the law does not really hold my interest at all, but these two words do; in the context of the quest of trying to change and make a better person and life. In others that claim that they want to do the same these two words come up frequently. Changing oneself is hard, extremely hard, and it takes more work than one would believe. Because of the visible change in me between the drinking person and the non drinking person, often people will tell me that they want to change, not just the people that have a drinking/drugging problem. That is where I hear those two words often and repeatedly, of all the people I have met outside my Strange Classrooms, telling me they want to change, NOT ONE, has actually done anything constructive about making that change. When asked why they do not use the knowledge I have passed on to them, all I get is excuses, followed by justification.

This is quite disheartening, but I learned, I cannot change anyone but myself, so all I can do is make sure that I do not use those two actions too often in my Pursuit of Happiness.

Nosce te ipsum

View the Mexican Horse Thief’s Page

Short Story




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