When I asked for your opinion of Guiltless, who "bought" a couch but never paid for it ("I stole a couch," 4/14/2011), you didn't disappoint. Here's a sampling of your responses.
The general consensus is that pilfering a couch is unacceptable. Yet I imagine many of you feel comfortable "borrowing" a pen from the office. They're both stealing. So what makes one acceptable and the other a crime?
Dear Tell All: The guy should pay for the damn couch, or it's stealing. Hasn't he ever heard of karma?
Cut and dry
Dear Tell All: The fact that this person signs their name "guiltless" indicates they lack a basic social conscience. Comparing an unexpired parking meter or finding $10 to essentially stealing a couch ($500+?) is definitely problematic. No way, no how is this justified. Maybe your parents didn't coerce you into Sunday school at an early age to teach you this basic premise. The universal thought of "Do no evil" obviously doesn't include theft in this person's eyes. You think it was a "gift" of the universe? Did you ever hear "what goes around comes around?" If you don't think you've done anything wrong, you might check out the word "sociopath." I wonder who else you've done wrong and walked away with a clean conscience. Hoping I never meet you.
As clear a conscience as I can make it
Dear Tell All: Like Guiltless, I was an incorrigible shoplifter for years. Now when I begin to feel guilty or otherwise bad about my former nefarious habits, I just sit down and write out a nice check to Second Harvest Food Bank. After which I feel just fine.
Dear Tell All: Well, you see, to begin with, you've started with an unarguably false premise. Regardless of what anyone says or does to you, no one can tell you what or how to feel. What you feel is what you feel. Anyone exterior to yourself is entitled to say how they believe you should feel; what they aren't entitled to do is direct you to feel how they think you should.