Although touted as the highest form of morality, altruism may not be a logically coherent notion. In this article, we explore whether altruism makes sense in the context of ethical structures.
A brief survey to help you understand your own ethical stance and affiliation to major ethical theories.
Was Ned Stark a good guy? Maybe not.
What does it mean to engage in rebellion against a state? What are the ethical and practical implications of rebellion? Under what conditions is rebellion an option? Given our frequent training and arming of foreign rebels, it behooves us to have a functional understanding of these questions.
Having previously sketched out my perspective on the phenomenon of school shootings, this article delves into the proposed solutions by the generally two sides of the gun-control debate. It points out the problems with the many of the solutions proposed thus far, and makes a tentative proposal on a meaningful solution.
The way we think about school shootings (and mass shootings in general) may be flawed; and a flawed diagnosis results in the wrong treatment. In this intellectual sketch, I offer a different take on the diagnosis.
Even in this age of “unique” individuals, the problems noted back as far as 1500 BC (or earlier) continue to plague us as a society. Blind following necessitates the surrender of reason, and thus negates our humanity, as we try to fit into our surroundings.
Telling the truth is not only a matter of good manners, it is also the key to making communication and civilization possible. By understanding the role of truth-telling in communication, the problems of lying are revealed to be far deeper than they come across at first blush.
Actions have consequences. Military actions have very big, wide-ranging, and long-lasting consequences. However, military actions are ultimately within our control. Who we vote for, what we vote for, what we support and what we condemn, are all elements that directly shape our ideas of the military and its use. Understanding these issues is a necessary part of functional democratic participation, as well as an ethical engagement with the world.
The recent trend of “excommunicating” people from various groups, as a rejection of their behaviors, is a bad option for several reasons. Yes, the idea that ISIS members are Muslim sounds abhorrent to Muslims, and the idea that Myanmar’s genocidal government sounds abhorrent to Buddhists. But the attempt to simply call them non-Muslim or non-Buddhists creates far more problems than it solves.