|I know this makes me a giant dork, but it's a good picture.|
I generally don’t like to refer to “good” or “evil” as entities, because they’re not. I don’t believe that either can be used as a subject in terms of a force that imposes itself on the world. Evil, used as a noun as opposed to its use as an adjective, is merely a word that encompasses those actions of man, and conditions of this world, that pervert, stifle, and destroy individual good. So to say that evil is triumphant is metaphorical, since there is no entity called “Evil,” that seeks victory over its antithetical entity “Good.”
That being said, there are two kinds of evil, and only one of them is truly triumphant. The first kind is that which is very easily observable and discernable by nearly all peoples. Murder? Evil in nearly all cultures. Even cultures of violence have a sense that there is a difference between justified killing and murder. Stealing? Even thieves understand that stealing is wrong: although they steal from others, they become indignant when someone steals from them.
The first kind of evil, blatant and highly visible, is difficult to curb but not impossible. You can punish those who partake in it, remove them from society that they may never be allowed to perpetrate it again. For the most part, it is easy to avoid.
Far worse, however, is the brand of evil that perverts and twists one’s soul without them even realizing it. Take this situation for example. This girl, Tina, was raped by a member of her church when she was 15. The man raped her twice and impregnated her. When the church found out what had happened, they convinced her that it was her fault that she was raped and impregnated, and got her mother to agree to send her away to Colorado to birth her bastard child. They then forced her to give the child up for adoption.
For years the case went nowhere because when she reported the incident, her assailant was nowhere to be found. Once he was found last year, she was contacted by the police, and trial proceedings started. Her mother still believes that it was her daughter’s fault and that she’s lying about the sexual activity being non-consensual.
This is the evil that is triumphant. It is nothing for a malevolent character to commit acts of atrocious nature. When evil corrupts the good and makes them believe that their horrifying actions are actually virtuous and upright, that is when hope is lost. These people, Fundamentalist Baptists, call themselves Christians—God-fearing no doubt—and yet they have completely misinterpreted Jesus’ ministry. So misguided is their interpretation that they are blinded to the good that Jesus espoused.
Instead of comforting this girl and ostracizing the sinner, instead of turning a rapist over to the authorities, these disgusting examples of human depravity thought that the girl had somehow sinned. Not only have they committed an evil by persecuting the victim of a crime, but they have done worse by perpetuating that evil every day that they preach their vile doctrine of putrescent hatred and vitriol.
If evil were an entity, it would rejoice in the fact that there’s never a shortage of fools who are so susceptible to being effortlessly and utterly subverted by its seductive caress. The evil that is disguised as good, the horror that masquerades as virtue has poisoned their souls and they don’t even know it.
One of life’s greatest tragedies is that evil can so easily be construed as good, justified as benevolent, and that it is done so by people who truly desire to be pious.