I’d be very surprised if I invented the Golden Rule. I never get the important memos.
Not silly, nor false. Ethical action comes from the one who acts, just as unethical action does. Right action isn’t something the other guy’s supposed to do; it’s what I–whatever collection of aggregates composes that I–am supposed to do, just as right speech is not what the other guy is supposed to speak, but what I’m supposed to.
Do you control others’ actions? Nope. Only one being’s actions are within the scope of an individual’s control, and that is that individual alone.
It’s absolutely correct that the Golden Rule doesn’t mandate cheek-turning; that’s what makes it common sense. If you prefer to live a life where people inflict harm, then by all means, inflict harm yourself–it’s most likely they’ll respond in kind. But it’s not guaranteed–because other individuals control their own actions.
If you’d rather not that be the case, well and again, what other people do is not in your control. Only you are. So you act in the way you’d prefer others to.
I think you’re coming at “rule” entirley incorrectly: thinking of the word in the sense of “instruction” or “law.” No kewpie doll. Rule as in “measure.” As in the measure of an individual, and that individual’s actions; the measure is golden when one acts not in consonance with how they would rather others act–regardless of how they do.
Right action is neither onus or burden. That law firm is as respectable as any ambulance chaser.