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Let’s just end the humanitarian efforts*

NOT REALLY*, but this statement is relevant to a conversation that I had today. So now that I have your attention, I come with more of a question that a defined idea. (I have seen over previous years on this site various philosophical inputs from people from all over the world, and am interested to hear from those who may read this). Someone made the argument to me today that us humans only ever act for selfish reasons. It begs the age-old question: is any act truly, absolutely altruistic? This person (my Airbnb host) said he used to passionately root for equality. Cared about the sociopolitical movements of the moment. Until he realised he actually didn’t, he just felt like he should. What does it actually matter to him if people are starving, he asks? I said no. We care because we humans are empathetic. Seeing someone sad makes us sad. Seeing someone go hungry makes us want them to be fed and to be ok. Do we want these people to be ok, because we don’t like the feeling WE have knowing that they are not? We chatted about this for 2 hours. My bottom line is I don’t think so. I think there is such a thing as wanting the best for other people, for them. I think we can care about the injustices others face. And if you dig through 5000 layers, to find at the very bottom, it does have something to do with how these injustices makes us feel within ourselves (guilty, etc.): does that matter? Is it even remotely relevant, if it is a) universal, as argued, and b) we will never even know if it is or not?
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