Would you consider malevolent to allow a person with HIV to have kids? Would you consider malevolent to allow a person with hemophilia to have kids? While both of those are different, I don't think that from the usual moral point of view (in some places), any of them could be considered good. Species or not. Someone please point me at someone who wanted to be born with hemophilia (and is not joking about it).
Good and Evil, Malevolence and Benevolence: these are describing the intentions of the individual, not the acts. I would personally say, an individual who has a inheritable disease who breeds for the purpose for ensuring that their offspring will have to live with a disease is "evil" and someone who has children DESPITE the disease is not. You're really feeling around the morality of negative eugenics, which is something I do not embrace at all. Personally, I think no authority should have the rights to tell any two individuals whether or not they can have offspring. I think if we have the technology to "clean" the genes of said offspring to make sure they have no genetic disease, then we are morally obliged to do so.
Our current societies behave much like you describe (ruthless, merciless) When the USA invades other countries, surely they do it for petrodollars (or similar economic control tools) and supporting an elite group, not because they are altruists. I'd certainly not want to get ill in the USA... unless I'm rich. I heard that some there defend a twisted version of "survival of the fittest".
I wouldn't call the Americans evil, but yeah, that's a fair point. I would point out that EU societies, contributing more than 50% of global foreign aid maybe aren't doing it for completely selfish reasons? I mean, there are many countries with genuine concerns about human security and human dignity and take development issues very strongly, and no, none of them have spotless records, but assuming altruistic behaviour in international politics is a bit of a naieve dream from the 1990's. Then again, most of GalCiv can be described as such, so...
Altruism is a survival tool, by the way. And we live in society not because we love people (we may love some of it) but because we need it. There is no society by itself as there is no individual by itself (unless you are a pure hermit). Both exists at the same time and influence each other constantly. It's not a society structure's fault (being non alive) to be dominated by a selfish elite that is willing to crush the lower ranks of their society. It'd be the low rank invidiuals' fault to live in a society that they don't like and do nothing about it. Individuals create a society. They define its rules. A society doesn't create itself or change itself. Its individuals do. You cannot blame society itself for its "evilness", you can only blame the people who defined and institutionalized it. And those who still support it.
I agree on a lot of these points. A pole only exists in relation to it's opposite. In reality, they are both a part of a greater continuum, so the idea of one triumphing over the other is nonsense. But I will say you can blame society. Society, nations, these things do not exist. They're big imaginary things that are given rights ahead of the people who comprise them. So of course they cannot be blamed, because they have no autonomy or will. They do, however, have fair substantial acts carried out in their name. Personally, I believe in government. I think that while there might be individuals, people who are best left to their own devices, there are people who need the government to act as a parent. There are people who just want to keep their heads down and live the same life as everyone always have: safe and protected. Those people need a government to protect them from the world, because they tend to get violent if they aren't. They need a higher authority and they want it. For good or bad, most people seem to support peace, order and stability, despite any injustices present in that system.
The survival of the species doesn't involve hive minds. It doesn't involve everybody living in some kind of communist camp. Survival of the species means that people don't go screwing the future of the species. It doesn't mean that you don't care of your people, even if they are disabled. Or that there are no challenges or rivaly. It means that you tolerate others that you may disagree with as long as neither of you is doing stuff that endangers everybody (nuclear or viral weapons, as a easy example). It doesn't mean that you cannot support slavery (or that you have to support it). Yes, if it could mean that at one point you would have to sacrifice lives to do so, what with that? So if my right arm where to gangrene and my life would depend on amputating it: should I die because killing the cells of that arm is wrong? Even if they threaten with killing the rest of the cells of my body? I do not say that one should go killing people or be like Spartans with their babies. But if there is a (crystal clear with no hidden agenda) situation where you have to chose between killing (or letting die) some people in order to make the rest survive, it'd go against nature to chose suicide for the group. Being emotional beings, easier said than done (especially with people we know) but I'd not feel well for killing all my species (me included) for saving my family (that died like everybody else anyway).
If I might be pedantic, the survival of the species means that the species continues to exist. It doesn't prescribe how the species continues to exist. If survival is something one values, then one usually throws morality out the window and embrace one's inner savage (i.e. resorting to cannibalism in a life raft.) Survival is the most basic of all acts. It is foundational. It's only what we do after we successfully survive that matters. That said, in the choice to amputate one's arm to survive is complicated by the fact that one's arm in this case is a number of thinking, feeling persons with their own right to live their lives as they see fit.
Not counting stuff like people being actually selfish or that not every situation is a matter of black and white. When you throw the unknown and selfish people into the equation, then you need lots of exceptions. And while we do need challenge as a species, the extra handicap of people who only serve their own interests is an unnecesary one. As long as there are humans that don't care about other humans (including those ones he doesn't know), not much hope no matter the system.
I'd argue that that those who back "the herd" do so because it represents their own interests better than going it alone. The might even be backing an inefficient system that in turn would be handicaping the whole, because the people in question are resistant to change and afraid of difference. I'd also say forcing people, against their will, to provide for the whole, is tantamount to slavery. If the thought of a handicap is enough suspend the freedom of a minority-- if order must be enforced at all costs-- then handicap or not, that's not something I want to be a part of. Everyone has to come willingly to the table, and if the current constitution of order does not provide for the inclusion of individuals on terms acceptable to individuals then the system claiming to represent humanity is not representing humanity, but a mob of humans and will rule with as much wisdom and justice of a mob. I've seen my fair share of pitchforks to know what benevolence such people hold in their hearts.
Why should "supernatural" beings make any difference? Are not alien enough the people that live in other countries? Those who believe in different things? The notion of good and evil makes no sense in any context as we talk about "Doing what we think (or forced to think) that is good(best) for us". Surely alien lifeforms (illegal or not) can understand that simple concept.
Supernatural beings make a difference because the give something concrete that one can point at and identify as good or evil. Without this, what is good or evil is simply what one person or people find good or bad. It is a subjective concept. Therefore, if left subjective, then it loses it "true north" and any act can be regarded as good or evil. i.e. A Drengin likely does not see eating people as an evil act. Perhaps it is a good act. Maybe to another species genocide is a good act because it relieves the genocide-y from having to live one moment more in their impure form.