The problem with “It’s not cheating. It’s how things work.”

Cheating could be the way things work. If something doesn’t feel right, it might be wrong, or it might be that our background (culture, experiences, etc.) have conditioned us to feel bad by attaching punishments to it. When we realize something is actually wrong, then it doesn’t matter that “it’s how things work”. At various points in time things that are wrong could gain some ground and become norms. Most people participate in them and dislike them at the same time. Bribing and some forms of cheating are the way things work in some places.

Often, that is not the only way of making things happen. If there was no alternative way in a situation, we might have to be the agent of change, or go somewhere else, or do something else. None of these are easy, but we might deserve feeling good.