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multiple17-May-2004personalitybill Bronze Star Survey Creator by votes65561.5%


Do you think some people don't have a conscience?

conscience - the sense of the moral goodness or blameworthiness of one's own conduct, intentions, or character together with a feeling of obligation to do right or be good

43Yes, some people don't have a conscience.
16I have a conscience.
12No, everyone has a conscience.
7I know someone personally who doesn't have a conscience.
4I don't know.
2I don't have a conscience.
0I don't understand what a conscience is.

posted 18-May-2004 9:41am  
I believe there are people, some might call them psychopaths, that are wired very differently from the rest of this. I'm not sure if this wiring is due to nature or nurture, but it's very clear to me that some people out there put themselves first, and do not consider living things outside themselves (people or animals) to be of consequence and to have rights. As a result, I believe that serial killers and level three sex offenders are unable to consider the needs and rights of other human beings above their own, and thus can never be "cured" - the recidivism rate for these heinous crimes is, I believe, quite high.
posted 18-May-2004 9:52am  
I do, but some don't or you wouldn't have muderers and so many BAD people.
posted 18-May-2004 10:12am  
posted 18-May-2004 10:25am  
Yes, I believe that people that commit horrible acts and don't feel guilt musn't have a conscience.
posted 18-May-2004 10:28am  
Yeah, they're called "psychopaths".
posted 18-May-2004 10:42am  
Yes...and they are scary as hell.
romkey Survey Central Gold Subscriber
posted 18-May-2004 10:50am  
I think that some people don't have a lot of awareness of other people. I'm not sure that I believe in a conscience... I think people project a lot, some people have more empathy than others or project more than others, some people are more aware of the consequences of their actions than others... combine awareness and empathy and I think you generally get "conscience".

Some people also have strong drives that overpower their empathy or awareness, as well - the drives are things as simple as certain types of fetishes or fixations to a need for approval or need to rebel.
bill Bronze Star Survey Creator
posted 18-May-2004 10:55am  
I guess I was more interested in people who have no conscience, but yet get along OK in society (not psychopaths). They play by the rules (laws), but don't do it out of any internal sense of right or wrong, just an understanding that if they do something not allowed, they could lose their freedom. They're not out of kill people or anything, they just don't have a conscience. I probably should have made that distinction in the survey itself. *shrug*
(reply to bill) posted 18-May-2004 11:13am  
I believe there are law abiding people who also have no conscience.
(reply to bill) posted 18-May-2004 11:34am  
I knew a kid in high school who was definitely growing up to be senor psychopath - he tortured animals (which, psychologists say, is often how it starts). I think the closest thing I've seen in semi-normal behavior is people who are sorely lacking in empathy. They seem unable to understand how their behavior affects (usually in a hurtful way) others. I believe people who severely lack empathy can learn to behave properly in society, but it may not come naturally to them.
posted 18-May-2004 11:42am  
I think everyone has a conscience, but some people, such as sociopaths, opt not to listen to their conscience. They know they are doing something that society says is wrong, but they do it anyway because they want to. Ted Bundy and Charlie Manson are good examples of sociopaths. They both were charming, charismatic men who committed or convinced others to commit horrible crimes, but they knew they were breaking society's laws, but went ahead anyway.
Enheduanna Survey Central Subscriber
posted 18-May-2004 12:15pm  
Yes; or if they do, they're very good at ignoring it.
posted 18-May-2004 2:10pm  
I think some sick people just get their rocks off thinking about what is bad on their conscience.
(reply to Enheduanna) posted 18-May-2004 2:14pm  
I think they bask in it instead of trying to ignore it.
posted 18-May-2004 2:33pm  
I believe everyone has a conscience, just some choose to ignore it
Enheduanna Survey Central Subscriber
(reply to ASB) posted 18-May-2004 3:13pm  
(reply to Enheduanna) posted 18-May-2004 4:12pm  
I have an opinion that everyone has a conscience. Most "normal" people use their conscience to improve themselves and to not repeat previous mistakes they may have made. Sociopaths enjoy the effect that their conscience has on them. They get to relive their previous bad behaviors through this conscience and they enjoy it. Normal people do not enjoy bad things they have done like this.
posted 18-May-2004 4:44pm  
I believe everyone has one-whether or not they choose to listen to/follow it is a totally different issue!
posted 18-May-2004 4:45pm  
Yes, I believe there are those who have no conscience. I used to be married to one. I believe I have a conscience or I would have killed him many, many years ago. Sociopaths/psychopaths come in both genders, all shapes and sizes. This world is filled with them.
posted 18-May-2004 5:09pm  
Maybe. Someone I ran into today sure seemed to not have one. I stopped in at the restaurant I used to waitress at today. A man I used to wait on was in there, he was always very rude and disrespectful, so I tried 'avoiding' eye contact as I was leaving, but he called me over by his table. So, trying to be nice, I put a smile on and said "hello". He acted all friendly at first, asked how I was, I replied "fine"....then he says "oh but you've put a few pounds on, haven't you?" I thought, "did you just say that to me??" So, still trying to be nice, trying to brush it off, I said something like "oh..having a kid and being a stay-at-home Mom..oh well" type thing...And he continued..."No, it's not from just 'having a kid', it's from eating too much"....WHAT??? Who says these kind of things? I just picked up Ethan, looked at him, said sarcastically "oh thanks for the 'tip'" and walked away. Because I knew that if I would have said what was really on my mind it would have been very nasty, and I didn't want to make a scene...
Anyway, he must not have a conscience, because if he did, he wouldn't have been so rude.
(reply to moonstone) posted 18-May-2004 5:14pm  
You did not say anything because unlike this individual you have a conscience and because your son was with you. You did the right thing. Good for you, and I am glad you didn't sink to his level. The creep! smiley:::frown
(reply to freebird) posted 18-May-2004 5:36pm  
Thanks...smiley:::smile My husband was working just two doors down in the same building (construction stuff...) and I wanted to walk down there and tell him "Go kick that guys ass!" But, I didn't... smiley:::wink
(reply to moonstone) posted 18-May-2004 6:03pm  
I might have been tempted to tell my hubby too, but he would have sunk to this guy's level and kicked his butt. Then I'd feel like a jerk getting him in a mess. I am glad you didn't---it shows me what kind of person you are. I am glad to "know" you!
(reply to freebird) posted 18-May-2004 6:30pm  
Thanks!! love
(reply to moonstone) posted 18-May-2004 6:46pm  
posted 18-May-2004 11:32pm  
i think it could be possible.
posted 19-May-2004 12:12pm  
There are ALOT of people in the world who don't have a conscience for one reason or another. When people think of this question - the first thing they generally think of is the criminal population. I challenge you to think outside the box a little bit here.
There are actually 3 types of people that fit this characteristic.
There are people in the world who have Alzheimer's and other states of mental illness, where a person may have once had a conscience but no longer has the ability to tell right from wrong. Then, there are types of mental illness, like extreme autism, where some patients - not all - can be born without a conscience.
Then - you have sociopaths, psychopaths, and other neurotics...who are the ones people associate with the criminal population. Many psychologists believe that these people are a result of a predisposition mixed with environmental factors.

The key thing to realize is that there is HELP available for mental illness just like there is physical illness. If you have a broken arm - you go to the doctor to get something done about it. People shouldn't suffer in silence when their minds are not at peace. Get help if you need it.
(reply to caviartaste) posted 19-May-2004 12:18pm  
that is some good advice. I hope those who may need the help will get it. There is no shame in asking for help, the shame is not doing something about it.
Biggles Bronze Star Survey Creator This user is on the site NOW (2 minutes ago)
posted 20-May-2004 1:35pm  
I think everyone has a conscience, but it can be less developed in children, people with mental problems and people with low mental ages.
posted 20-May-2004 10:04pm  
There are some who don't - and it's scarey!
posted 20-May-2004 10:10pm  
only the amoral ones.
posted 20-May-2004 10:11pm  
but, seriously. i don't believe there is any human without a conscience
(reply to bill) posted 20-May-2004 10:17pm  
your initial comment sounds a lot like my own description of anarchy. i don't think that lifestyle has anything to do with not having a conscience. its free will living. but i think most people know right from wrong whether they follow the laws of the land, or not.
bill Bronze Star Survey Creator
(reply to heyzeus1) posted 21-May-2004 7:12am  
I think there are a lot of people that know right from wrong, but still do wrong... then justify it with some sort of rationalization.
jettles Survey Central Subscriber
posted 21-May-2004 8:20am  
i think everyone has a conscience, some people just don't understand what is right or good for all or they just don't care!
(reply to bill) posted 21-May-2004 10:16am  
sure. but also, what is right and wrong varies from person to person. take pot. a large portion of folks feel it's not wrong to go buy some. another large portion of folks believe it is, cause it's against the law. some people would tell you it is wrong to not fully stop and at stopsign in the middle of country with nobody around or coming either way, because it is against the law. an islamist might say americans have no conscience because the women don't cover their faces in public, and aren't ashamed of it, either. i think that many laws are made for somebody's or some groups monetary gain, and many are simply taxes in those laws don't need to be followed.
then, of course, there are just selfish folks. its wrong to steal, but if you do, you did it because your selfishness overcame your sense of right and wrong. even if a person doesnt feel bad afterwords, they still have a conscience about it, but it is simply silenced by the selfishness or rationalized away, like you said.
bill Bronze Star Survey Creator
(reply to heyzeus1) posted 21-May-2004 2:23pm  
I don't agree that laws against victimless crimes are taxes in disguise. I think people who support those laws do so out of a desire to help people or help society as a whole function better or safer.

Yeah, I was thinking more about crimes where there is a victim (violence, theft, etc.)...
posted 21-May-2004 6:17pm  
If they're sane, yes.
posted 22-May-2004 3:49pm  
Absolutely! I know someone who's like that. They are very scarey dudes.Psychopaths! How else could they go to sleep every night after committing sadistic acts? Its fascinating to get into their head and try to figure out their mindset and then lock them up under the prison.
posted 22-May-2004 8:44pm  
Yes. I don't about some things.
posted 23-May-2004 5:01pm  
Many people don't have a conscience. On some issues I don't have one.
posted 24-May-2004 1:25pm  
It's just that some people don't care what their conscience tells them.
posted 25-May-2004 8:46am  
Everyone has a conscience, some people just don't give a rats.. butt.
posted 20-Jun-2004 11:22am  
Some have become so devoid of caring that it appears that they don't have a conscience but all people do. Even if its to only care about animals but not people.
posted 19-Feb-2006 11:54pm  
Unfortunately - experience suggests that YES there is truth to this -- or possibly they do have a conscience but it is twisted. Apparently this pretty much describes your average sociopath so it does exist.

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