If you lie, you’ll steal, if you’ll steal you’ll cheat, and if you cheat you’ll kill. Or so they say but it’s not true. Take me for example, I lie all the time, hell I’m a lawyer, so basically I lie for a living. I make stuff up, all the time, like right now.
But that doesn’t make me a thief. Okay, so I stole a little when I was a kid, who didn’t? Mostly petty stuff from my mother’s purse or from the drugstore – although I did go a little buck wild with some scissors in a fabric store once upon a time.
Anyway, I haven’t stolen anything in decades. Not that I’d hesitate to do so again if I had to, but that’s not really stealing, it’s survival. And surely that can’t count. Of course, in truth (as if I’m capable of achieving that state of grace) I would probably steal stuff right now if I thought I could get away with it. Mostly stuff I see that I want, which I believe is called “coveting.”
Yet what is coveting at its essence but stealing and cheating, sort of like three of a kind over a pair. When you want what somebody else has it’s stealing at least in the abstract; and if you act on that desire you’re cheating another out of what is rightfully theirs.
So, okay, maybe under the right circumstances or at some time in the distant past or as yet unforeseeable future I have or might again steal and cheat (since I was forthright enough to admit to lying right up front and at the beginning).
But killing? That’s more than a little bit of a stretch. Not that there aren’t an abundant supply of eminently qualified candidates who most well and truly deserve killing, because there are scores of the worthy even in my circle of acquaintances. I wonder if you kill someone who really needs killing if it counts the same as, say a mall massacre of total strangers.
I guess I pretty much have to drop a footnote next to each of these alleged sins, and who wouldn’t? Only the exceedingly boring or bigger liars than I.