What's wrong with middle Ages and beyond?

The middle Ages were not what the romantic imagination paints, but instead a rugged age much more insensitive than ours todays. Tortures, burnings, hangings were public spectacles, their thrill was like today's bullfights or prizefights. The ladies of high society went to the place of execution the night before and slept in their coaches in order not to miss the entertainment. However ghastly and shocking these tortures were to any normal person, what is far more shocking is the fact that so many people of fashion found pleasure and excitement in them.

Today's moral reality is still philosophical; it is not fundamentally different from that of antiquity or the Middle Ages. We have the same fundamental values and disvalues, even through we practice them with greater refinement, including torture.

--Robert S. Hartman