Andrew Fiala

Trump: America is ‘full’ and cannot accept newcomers. The Golden Rule says otherwise

The Malthusians don’t understand this. They view the world from the vantage point of self-interest. They see life as a zero-sum struggle for survival. They think that each new person on the lifeboat is an egoist who will take advantage without adding to the commonwealth. And they are clearly not willing to abide by my grandfather’s idea that the family should hold back to make room for the other.

The ethic of hospitality sees things differently. When someone is hungry you feed them. When a stranger arrives you make room and hold back. But hospitality is not primarily about holding back. It is about throwing a party that begins with five loaves and two fishes and ends up feeding a multitude.

Andrew Fiala is a professor of philosophy and director of The Ethics Center at Fresno State: @PhilosophyFiala