HUGO GROTIUS (Huig de Groot), a modern természetjogi felfogás és a modern politikai irodalom egyik megteremtője, aki a természet-jogon alapuló nemzetközi jog alapjait fektette le.
In many pockets of societal and international living those with a perceived disadvantage have long tended to ascribe their lack of privileges or outright misery to a victim situation. Victimhood holds out many consolations. By claiming to be victims, even people locked in self-caused misery can sidestep most of the natural causes of their situation on two counts: first, for all the pitiful figure they presently cut, they had clearly made a decent try before losing out and becoming victims, and second, there must have been a fiercely antagonistic agent, the Victimizer, who can be held accountable (retroactively, if need be) for the misery they now find themselves in.
It is the consolation of finding a culprit, an external agent for even self-inflicted losses that explains why so many groups of people, through the ages and across the board, have opted to claim victimhood rather than blame themselves, Nature, or just tough luck for their underdog position. This in spite of the sorry fact that by loudly claiming to be underdogs or losers those people would rarely arouse the admiration of others; no losers, let alone self-acclaimed ones, have ever seriously hoped that others would, on the sheer evidence of the formers’ miserable position, think too highly of their personal courage, excellence, or resilience.
Yet, for all the knee-jerk condescension or derision people claiming to be victims tend to induce in others, there is one overriding benefit of claiming victimhood, namely that, at least in tolerant societies touting a banner of equality, the notion of a redress immediately arises.
The more credible and well-recognized your victimhood, the greater the redress you are likely to earn, it seems. Before examining victimhoods of seized turf or assets, a downtrodden race, sex, religion, or class, however, I want briefly to look at the moral philosophy behind the issues to be discussed.