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← Intelligent Design and the cruelty of nature

Sketchy's Avatar Jump to comment 83 by Sketchy

Comment 80 by ccw95005

Who's to say, logically, that the moral beliefs of a serial killer like Jeffrey Dahmer aren't just as valid as yours or mine?

We could find out. Try it. Let’s all do what he did, see what happens.

Almost all of us in the West have somewhat similar ideas of right and wrong, but majority vote isn't a very good way of judging morality.

That’s right. Majority vote has no bearing on the facts.

In some Muslim countries, many people believe that killing innocent infidels is a moral act.

Only because they’re mistaken about the facts. There’s no gods so there's really no grounds for doing this.

The majority in Salem, Massachussetts probably believed that burning witches was a moral act.

Only because they were mistaken about the facts. There’s no such thing as witches, so logically it can’t be moral to kill them.

As much as I'd like to believe that my moral principles are 100% valid and universal, I can't. Plenty of individuals with views we'd consider abhorrent believe just as strongly as we do that they are right.

I hold no such conviction about my moral principles either. In fact, I’m sure they could be a lot better, but unfortunately I’m not bright or knowledgeable or empathic enough to see how, exactly. I hope I will be some day. However, I can clearly see how my moral principles could be worse, with near 100% certainty.

Certainly there's great difference of opinion in developed countries about whether animals have the same rights as humans. You apparently believe they do.

No, of course I don’t. Clearly, I wouldn’t suggest controlling human population by shooting humans.

The only way you can successfully argue logically that a particular moral principle is best is if you start with certain assumptions that everybody in the discussion agrees with, and build from there.

Yes, that’s a good approach. Start with the assumptions that suffering is bad and well-being is good. Everyone in the world will agree. That is, if they’re being rational and honest.

I found your idea of shooting zebras to feed the lions interesting.

Cool! Maybe it’ll catch on!

Comment 82 by logicophilosophicus:

More to the point, just because people disagree about the morality of an action doesn't mean there is no right answer: the variety of modern cosmologies doesn't prove or even suggest that there's no right answer.

Exactly.

Mon, 21 May 2012 12:28:37 UTC | #942601