Tag Archives: psychology

How good people turn evil?

Monsters, aliens

The Lucifer effect

Go back to the future_Flyingstories


This situation reminds me of the insightful (and very popular) experiment made at Standford University in 1971 and the book that followed, written by Phillip Zimbardo, The Lucifer Effect.


How nice people turn out not to be so nice anymore?


There are many reasons, many factors that sum up to create a so-called monsters. What we know is that no one is born evil. The same idea we have of evilness changed with time. The outstanding progress of medicine and the knowledge of our brain give us new keys to understand the phenomenon.

A trigger


We know for sure something that “triggers” us and made us prone to be evil. To put it in plain words, to be de-identified is a big motivator. Even the nicest person on Earth, set in a situation of having immense power and no control, can turn into a monster. Oh, it doesn’t mean everyone will react in the same way, but most people will (or let other people turn evil without doing anything to prevent it).

Go back to the future


Coming back to our story, Go back to the future: changing the name of the “newcomers” into aliens the society can turn the eyes away from the problem. The Chief of the State, a pure idiot with no skills whatsoever, become a real monster. The middle-class start shooting at the “coming aliens” just for fun.


Who’s helping the aliens?


Well, whoever they might be, they can go to hell. Or to prison, to be more precise. No, this isn’t pure fantasy. The right-wing hasn’t always been like this in Italy. But the new right-wing likes to speak to the bellies of the population. Don’t you believe me? Imagine if somebody would arrest me for saving people in the open sea. As estimates from the UN attested, 25 people die every day in front of Sicilian coasts. So, this blood is in our hands.


And what are we doing to prevent it?


Nothing, really. Like real monsters do. And this isn’t just my story.

This is reality.