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Human Goodness

December 08, 1996

Re "Of Grace and Disgrace," Opinion, Dec. 1:

Commenting about the Thanksgiving tradition of counting blessings instead of remembering such "distractions" as "violence" and "bad happenings," Martin E. Marty says, "In the normal course of the year, the distractions win out" when compared with what he calls "graces and good things."

In reality, human goodness far outweighs human evil. Only in the news business, where rarity bestows newsworthiness, are those unusual bad things more prevalent. Even his example of the teenaged parents who killed their newborn is extremely aberrant; a substantial majority of pregnancies culminate in healthy, live births. Whatever one thinks of abortion--whether it is a sin or merely the result of poor judgment--the actual infanticide of a baby is extremely rare.

The fact that "good news" is so rare--that such a high threshold of goodness is required to transcend its commonness--speaks volumes about its predominance in the human personality.

DOUGLAS DUNN

Oceanside

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