From the Book ‘Thoughts for one hundred days’, Richard L. Evans shared:

Among the ancient Athenians it is said that Solon invoked a law that penalized people that refused to take sides on disputed principles and public problems. It was his conviction that a person should commit himself to one side or the other in any question of serious consequence instead of standing by in idle indifference,

It sometimes seems so safe, so comfortable to stand by and say, “I am neutral. I won’t take sides. I can’t be bothered. I’ll wait and see what happens.” But in a sense there is no neutrality when one stands in the midst of something that should be done and no such thing as justifiable indifference in any important issue or in preservation of any important principle. Indeed, indifference may be a great source of comfort and encouragement to evil and excess.

When a man wants to do something he shouldn’t do, often he doesn’t need or want our active assistance. All he may need to know is that we won’t actively interfere. If he wants to steal, if he wants to do violence, if he wants to defraud or defy the law, he may only need to know that we shall be indifferent to what he is doing. And in such circumstances indifference may amount to active assistance. If a person doesn’t sustain the law, he is, in a sense, assisting the guilty. If he closes his eyes to public or private perfidy, he is doing his part to make such perfidy possible.

John the Divine indicted indifference in these words: “I know thy works that thou art neither hot nor cold.”43 Where a principle is at issue those who weakly watch and offer no assistance to either side have no part with the valiant, no part either with the victor or the vanquished. They are victims of their own evasion, not quite daring to do right nor quite wanting to do wrong. To be indifferent to error or to any evil is to give great comfort and encouragement to error and evil. And in such circumstances indifference is not neutrality. In such circumstances indifference is an active evil. ~Richard L. Evans, Thoughts for one hundred days (Salt Lake City: Publishers Press, 1966), 83-84

perfidy—deceitfulness; untrustworthiness.

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