For starters, I’ll describe what I’m going for with this species (I’ll call them White Hairs because, you guessed it, they have white hair) They are humanoid with pale gray skin, tall and pointed, but stationary ears, and are taller than humans on average by a few inches. White Hairs are a very tight knit species, but aren’t shy with humans (those in my ‘world’ live in a ‘new’ galaxy) or other species; in fact, they’re quite outgoing.
As the question’s title states, the vast majority of the White Hairs are incredibly kind and compassionate. To clarify, I’ll give an example: Let’s say that a human walks into another human’s home and shoots him. These two humans don’t know each other, but, for whatever reason, the killer decided to shoot this stranger. If you stopped a random White Hair on the streets and told them about it, their first thought would be to wonder what happened to the killer in their life to bring them to do such a thing (were they coerced into it by a gang of equally pitiable persons, has their life been so full of hardships that they are now filled with hate, have they taken an offer of money in exchange for killing this man because they badly need it, etc.) They will always attempt to understand why others do what they do and will be sympathetic towards them, no matter how heinous their crime. Now, let’s say that it’s been proven that the killer is a sociopath, that he lacks any and all remorse for what he’s done, that there is nothing in his reason for killing the victim that your average human could sympathize with (he’s had a blessed life, has plenty of money, and isn’t even associated with any criminal organizations) Even in this situation, a White Hair would not feel disgust towards the killer, they would pity him because he is incapable of empathy, which they hold in the highest regard, and love, which they view as something to be cherished and grateful for.
Now, by ‘the vast majority’, I mean such a high percentage (I’m thinking around 98% or more) that practically all humans and members of other species view the White Hairs as the bleeding hearts of the galaxy as a whole. They consider it a fact that literally all White Hairs are this way and you would be hard pressed to find someone that disagrees.
I first considered the explanation that they are simply raised this way, that it is so concrete in their culture that it is impossible to grow up in a White Hair household without having this mindset instilled into you. The more I thought about this, though, I began to see a flaw in that idea. If the White Hair way is simply the product of upbringing, wouldn’t there be plenty of White Hairs that didn’t genuinely have this disposition, but just acted as if they did or strived to make themselves think this way because it’s their definition of normal?
This brought me to the notion of there being a genetic reason for their mindset. I have a problem with a genetic explanation as well, however: I’ve come up with two White Hair characters that have unusual dispositions compared to the rest of their species. One of these White Hairs deviates greatly from the rest and has to act when around family and others because she feels that there’s something wrong with the fact that she’s unusually selfish and less compassionate than her peers. The other unusual White Hair is genuinely kind according to human standards, but if someone punched him in the face his initial reaction wouldn’t be to wonder whether or not that person got enough love as a child, he would just get mad, because that hurt, so screw you. I’m not sure how to explain the existence of this small percent if their disposition is a genetic thing or even if disposition can really be effected by genetics.
I would really like to be able to explain this through upbringing and culture because I’m disinclined towards genetic engineering or eugenics as the cause. However, I can’t figure out how to avoid the likelihood of many White Hairs not being innately compassionate if I use upbringing as an explanation for their behavior.
Thanks in advance. And if there’s anything wrong with my question or if more information is needed to answer it, please let me know.