Thought Experiment

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know nothing.jpgA propos the BroderDouthatWill-et al. judgment that Arizona legislators and their constituents aren’t to blame for trampling the Constitution and ratcheting up anti-immigrant prejudice because the real responsibility belongs to Washington for failing to provide adequate border control: Shall we similarly excuse the anti-Catholic bigotry of the Know-Nothings because Congress failed to halt Irish immigration during the Potato Famine?

Extra credit: Should the aforesaid be considered examples of “situational ethics”?