What Makes Us Moral
and The Morality Quiz
. It's war time, and you're hiding in a basement with a group of other people. Enemy soldiers are approaching outside and will be drawn to any sound. If you're found, you'll all be killed immediately. A baby hiding with you starts to cry loudly and cannot be stopped. Smothering it to death is the only way to silence it, saving the lives of everyone in the room. Assume that the parents of the baby are unknown and not present and there will be no penalty for killing the child. Could you be the one who smothered it if no one else would?
posted by amyms
on Nov 25, 2007 -
"We can't do anything about it. We just have to obey.
" Fulton (Mo.) High School drama students learn that resistance is futile.
posted by Saucy Intruder
on Feb 11, 2006 -
Five Reasons Torture Is Always Wrong.
From the magazine "Christianity Today", David P. Gushee, a professor of moral philosophy at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, is against torture. Period. No exceptions. Complete with Bible verses to prove it.
posted by willmize
on Jan 27, 2006 -
Can we have an intelligent non-religion-bashing discussion about this article? ". . . perhaps the most shocking implication of my inquiry into the role religion plays in our lives" : ". . . those who have an unquestioning faith in the correctness of the moral teachings of their religion are a problem: If they haven't conscientiously considered, on their own, whether their pastors or priests or rabbis or imams are worthy of such delegated authority over their lives, then they are taking a personally immoral stand.
Please RTFA before commenting.
posted by spock
on Jan 26, 2006 -
Temperance. Silence. Order. Resolution. Frugality. Industry. Sincerity. Justice. Moderation. Cleanliness. Chastity. Tranquility. Humility. Benjamin Franklin's 13 virtues
. "He committed to giving strict attention to one virtue each week so after 13 weeks he moved through all 13. After 13 weeks he would start the process over again so in one year he would complete the course a total of 4 times."
posted by nthdegx
on Sep 10, 2005 -
Is Civilization Decaying?
Will technological progress be accompanied by moral progress? Notes on a 1923 debate between J. B. S. Haldane (Daedalus
) and Bertrand Russell (Icarus
As John Brunner pointed out in an article in the New Scientist in 1993, these two books ... inspired two generations of science fiction writers."
posted by painquale
on Jul 10, 2005 -
A new Texas bill
seeks to give pharmacists the right to object to dispensing emergency contraceptives. The bill was spurred by over a year's worth of debate about an incident in Denton
where a rape victim was denied a morning-after pill by a pharmacist at Eckerd's. Supporters say that pharmacists should be able to opt out of dispensing drugs that are used for abortions, but the opposition points out that the bill's definition of emergency contraceptives can be construed to include all birth control. Should pharmacists be allowed to morally object, or is this an anti-birth-control boondoggle?
posted by rush
on Apr 12, 2005 -
There's a movie out now that, like The Crying Game,
depends for much of its impact on a plot twist. Are critics honor-bound not to blab that development to readers? (More Inside, including, duh, spoilers)
posted by soyjoy
on Feb 8, 2005 -
Would you like to live in a Christian nation with government similar to the early United States? Well, here’s your chance!
Are you disgusted that the gays are stomping on the Consitution? Do you demand the return to a moral government? Become part of the solution and help to redeem the nation, one seceded state at a time.
posted by archimago
on May 25, 2004 -
Culture War a-brewin'
...git yer ammo here
. As territory is staked out in this nascent national struggle, the Independent Gay Forum has a number of articles that provide a more-than-cursory glimpse of the manner in which one side hopes to frame
the debate, and a likely response to the frames already in place
. Especially notable is John Corvin's Homosexuality and Morality
. It appears as if the newest round of the culture wars may be unique in that two sides will be fighting them.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly
on Mar 2, 2004 -
Perversion for Profit linking pornography to the Communism
Citizens for Decent Literature: Sex Bad, violence Good!
I just thought this would be cool to revisit in light of the Mel Gibson, Orson Scott Card Debates.
Intersting what They shppw as to show you what YOU
should not be looking at.
Maybe (NSFW, maybe just NSF-Sanity)
posted by Elim
on Feb 26, 2004 -
Examining Bush's stem cell policy, two years later.
Kinsley: Put it all together, and the stem cells that can squeeze through Bush's loopholes are far less promising than they seemed two years ago, while the general promise of embryonic stem cells burns brighter than ever. If you claim to have made an anguished moral decision, and the factual basis for that decision turns out to be faulty, you ought to reconsider or your claim to moral anguish looks phony. But Bush's moral anguish was suspect from the beginning, because the policy it produced makes no sense.
posted by skallas
on Oct 25, 2003 -
American values brought to you by the letters...
In the Islamic world the USA doesn't appear to be making too many friends recently. But is it all a big misunderstanding? Perhaps the middle east simply need to learn more about American values. Who can teach them about American culture, morality, and cookies? You'd be surprised...
posted by kaemaril
on Sep 3, 2003 -
is eric rudolph a christian terrorist? via atrios
and who are these christian identity people?: "We declare and will wage total war on the ungodly communist regime in New York and your legaslative bureaucratic lackey's in Washington. It is you who are responsible and preside over the murder of children and issue the policy of ungodly preversion thats destroying our people," - sound familiar?
posted by specialk420
on Jun 2, 2003 -
A crackdown in Texas.
America - land of the free. And to guarantee that freedom, everyone has to be constantly watchful. Like the photo store clerk from Eckerd
who dutifully reported a Peruvian-born couple's lewd shots of their infants to the Richardson (Dallas/Texas suburbs) police. The photos showed the parents' two infants bathing naked, lying together in bed with their mother (again naked) and the 1-year-old Rodrigo suckling his mother's (naked) breast. So the couple was arrested -- the maximum prison sentence for the crime in question being 20 years -- and the children taken away. (verbatim k5
posted by The Jesse Helms
on Apr 20, 2003 -
"The study of feelings, once the province of psychology, is now spreading to history, literature, and other fields."
Scholarship on the emotions
is a rich field for historians and philosophers. Martha Nussbaum
(previously discussed here
) has written on historical views of the relationship between morality and emotion
, and delves more deeply into it in her recent book, Upheavals of Thought: The Intelligence of Emotions
. Of particular relevance these days may be M.F. Burnyeat's new book, Restraining Rage: The Ideology of Anger Control in Classical Antiquity
, which focuses on Classical views of anger and its proper place in human action. Many today could learn from Marcus Aurelius
: "as grief is a mark of weakness, so is anger, for both have been wounded and have surrendered to the wound." [First link via Ye Olde Phart
posted by homunculus
on Feb 25, 2003 -
In an article called "The Sociobiological Conceit"
, Gene Callahan says darwinism is logically flawed and inherently self-contradictory: "if moral ideas are simply an 'illusion' fostered on us by our genes then so are all of our other ideas – including the ideas of sociobiology!".
Callahan, fyi, belongs to the ultra-libertarian circles of the Mises Institute
. Would any of the evolutionists among us care to politely
posted by 111
on Feb 7, 2003 -
An interesting read
This guy seems to make some sense when lately nobody has been making sense at all... think we could get him to run in 2004? ;) When religious institutions fail to provide moral leadership, when governmental institutions become dangerous to the nation they are tasked to serve, when politicians do not work for the people, or when they tremble at the possibility that standing alone in righteousness might cost them votes, when journalism becomes one long commercial, when votes are brokered against the party affiliation of a majority of powerful judges, it becomes necessary for the singular multitude that is the American people to stand and be counted.
posted by sparky
on Jan 11, 2003 -