Ethics is a branch of philosophy dealing with questions of morality, including justice, virtue and vice, and good and evil

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What could be reasons why incest is wrong?

Rather than explaining with religious restrictions, how could you explain why incest relationship is wrong? How can you explain with morality? Yes, I know scientifically, incest generations are more ...
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How does non-cognitivism not need belief or picking of facts?

Source: pp 282-283, Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, 1999) by Simon Blackburn However, there is an issue here that divides thinkers into two camps. Consider this equation: ...
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What does it mean to 'objectify' a concern?

Source: Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, 1999) by Simon Blackburn   [p 274:] Again, we here uncover a central cause of strife and misunderstanding. For communication is ...
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Why does Simon Blackburn think psychological egoism is ENTIRELY wrong?

Source: p 272, Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, 1999) by Simon Blackburn   [1.] It might be suggested that when we have a concern there must be something in the offing ...
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Is the topic of adoption by same-sex couples treated by contemporary applied ethics?

The Italian parliament is currently discussing whether to allow same-sex couples the possibility of step-child adoption. This is fueling a heated debate across the whole country, but, as far as I can ...
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Is it legitimate to win a moral debate with logic?

Is it legitimate to win a moral, political or ethical argument by using logical methods? If you demonstrate that an opponent's statements are somehow illogical, the reason the opponent is ...
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What makes lazy arguments “valid” or “invalid”?

What I am thinking of is not exactly like the Lazy argument described in Wikipedia. I am thinking of a general argument where a normative conclusion towards inaction is drawn from the knowledge of the ...
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Is it ethical to give/donate/sell placebo pills marketed as “miracle” pills, if people actually get better? [closed]

It's seems well known that the placebo effect exists, so if a company were to sell/donate a pill that "helped symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome." Would this be okay if a large number ...
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Can Gödel's incompleteness theorems be applied to ethics?

It seems, that simplistically, that Gödel's incompleteness theorems can be applied to ethics in a very straightforward way by: Replacing "True" and "False" with "Right" and "Wrong" Assuming real ...
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60 views

Can trivial and ridiculous perfect duties be constructed?

First, formulate a maxim that enshrines your reason for acting as you propose. Second, recast that maxim as a universal law of nature governing all rational agents, and so as holding that all ...
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55 views

What is the philosophical motivation for open sourcing software? [closed]

Why would someone decide to distribute something freely? What are the benefits to the creators of a programming language or open source software if it's free (for example, php is free, and needs no ...
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Are there philosophers that have argued that a person can be equally happy with any life?

Are there philosophers or theologians that circumvent / solve the problem of evil in a way similar to the following? A person can ultimately be equally happy with any life, depending on how he uses ...
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How is Kant's 'Kingdom of Ends' anything more than just a combination of the first 2 maxims?

In Kant's categorical imperative, he outlines 3 maxims: Universal moral law: ‘Only act on a maxim that you could will should become a universal law.’ Treat people as ends: ‘Act so as to treat others ...
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Is it unethical to cheat at solitaire? [closed]

When I play solitaire by myself (physical cards), I often cheat. That is, I get to the point where I would be stuck and I don't end the game. Instead, I move a card in a manner inconsistent with ...
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Would a truly objective system of ethics amount to a form of dualism?

Per Hume's is-ought problem, most people consider ethical questions to be independent of empirical facts. The physicalist/materialist world-view is based on the idea that only thing that exists are ...
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Is deriving natural rights from nature a logical fallacy?

According to the view of natural rights, rights are derived from nature (a la John Locke), and these rights are possessed by all humans by virtue of being human. To provide an example based on my ...
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Is my interpretation of Objectivism in relation to environmental preservation correct? [closed]

Objectivism states, among the ethical aspects of its philosophy, that no human has the right to physically harm another in even the tiniest portion, except as just punishment. Environmental ...
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36 views

A law prevents a crime from occurring yet someone forces it to occur? [closed]

A law prevents a crime from occurring yet someone forces someone to commit the crime? Is the person forcing the crime to be committed guilty of breaking the law that is supposed to prevent the crime ...
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In a utilitarian calculus, where do I find the values that I assign each “feeling” or action?

I'm to do a utilitarian calculation but nobody mentions where I find the values that I assign each "feeling" or action? Where can I find these values? If I don't find them, do I just make them up ...
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Is this argument, with roots in virtue ethics, valid?

According to virtue ethics, one should always strive to do as a "virtuous person" would do in the same situation. If a patient wishes to continue treatment, even though the doctor deems the ...
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Could perseverance be a virtue? [closed]

There are four commonly virtues, known as cardinal virtues: justice, fortitude, prudence and temperance. Each one of these virtues require a pratical wisdom, not only reasoning: to become a fortitude ...
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Does gay marriage justify incest marriage because both are consensual activity? [closed]

Related question: Can any consensual activity be wrong? Disclaimer: This question has nothing to do with whether I agree or disagree with gay marriage! So don't overreact. It seems to me that if gay ...
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What are some arguments for that humans are more important than animals?

Imagine a man has fallen into a tiger cage. The tiger specimen is in danger of extinction. You can: Kill the tiger and save the man. Do nothing and let the tiger kill the man. By killing the ...
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How might aesthetics be radically Other?

I've read a handful of book by or about Levinas, but some time ago and without notes. IIRC his central ethical theme is that other people are not an aspect of the self, that our obligation to them ...
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Within Kant's moral philosophy, why should agents follow Kantian morality?

I am almost finishing The Grounding for the Metaphysics of morals and I believe I have a pretty good grasp of what deontology deems moral and what it deems immoral, however, I don't understand why we ...
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Who are the major thinkers of Act, Rule, and Motive Utilitarianism?

If one sought to present utilitarianism through the work of three of its prominent 20th Century theorists, which ones would make the most sense in the context of a general overview of the literature ...
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Do philosophers have one or more terms for“not putting others above you” and what have they written about it?

One facet of morality involves not putting others above you, not letting others put themselves above others, and using teasing, humor, putdowns, indifferent body-language etc. to attempt to "lower" ...
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How does one justify “to deserve” when punishing or sentencing?

The idea of issuing punishment for justice, because the agent of some crime "deserves" it has always bothered me. How does one justify what one deserves? Obviously this is a subjective value ...
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Is “group X is responsible for the action (or inaction) of politician Y because they are the majority of voters” a fallacious argument?

I have read this very useful answer which suggests that the moral responsibility of an individual voter for the actions of a politician they voted for, is limited. However, the comments on that ...
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Are there any alternatives to the theory that virtues are the means between two vices?

Aristotle theorizes that virtues like courage are the average or mean of two vices such as cowardice and foolhardiness. Are there any competing theories of virtue which explicitly reject virtues as ...
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What attempts have there been to systematically rank the virtues?

I know that there is some disagreement between virtue ethicists over whether or not the virtues can and should be ranked (this tends toward a legalism approaching deontology) but what are some of the ...
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What is objective morality?

It has been argued by some that God is a necessary and sufficient condition for objective morality. I can't accept this, because I don't even know what it means for something to be objectively moral. ...
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Does Plantinga's freewill defense approach to the problem of evil conflict with current standards of moral responsibility?

Alvin Plantinga provided a solution (or what he called a defense) to the problem of evil based on the value of freewill. Assuming one believes in God, the problem is how to reconcile the apparent ...
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What is the causal connection between virtues and eudaimonea in virtue ethics?

Eudaimonea is typically mistranslated as "happiness" (subjective mental states) when it is an objective state of fulfillment of purpose. (I consider that to be the central definition of the concept ...
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Help Hitler get into art school [closed]

Edit: Dilemmas or false dichotomy? Being able to refute the dilemma as a false dichotomy is closer to real life than being boxed in with the only given options. The classic question of killing baby ...
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What is the philosophical doctrine that most closely corresponds to the listed positions? [closed]

I would like to ask for a possible classification of the following philosophical positions: Everything is a simple result of natural occurances and as such lacks any objective value. Even if a god ...
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How might you apply John Rawls' theory of justice as fairness to the issue of privacy and security?

I'm a bit confused about how to apply John Rawls' theory of Justice as Fairness to the issue of privacy/security. Which statement below is correct? Justice as Fairness does not justify a decrease in ...
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Is Nietzsche saying here that agnostics admire the unintelligible?

I need help understanding the last two paragraphs of the 25th section, third essay, which is provided below from the free link: http://home.sandiego.edu/~janderso/360/genealogy3.htm Similarly who ...
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Is it unethical to NOT donate unused processor time to science? [closed]

This may seem to be an odd, confusing question, so I will first explain what this means: Cloud computing allows all people to share their computer's unused processing power to a number of projects ...
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Are you ethically obligated to download this? [closed]

There's an app that gives money to charity depending on how much you run. You can choose between dozens of organizations that help stop hunger, help the homeless, cure cancer, provide vaccines to poor ...
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Would Utilitarianism say that surveillance of the public is wrong?

If surveillance results in fear from the majority of the public, will Utilitarianism reject surveillance of the public for security reasons? I'm assuming this because Utilitarianism calls an action ...
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Does philosophy matter to personal life?

When I was studying philosophy, I sometimes asked my fellow students how studying philosophy affected their personal life. The answer I got was usually either "I haven't really thought about that" or ...
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“Genealogy of Morals” in retrospect. [closed]

How accurate has the Genealogy of Morals turned out to be with respect to the finding of anthropology? More specifically, is there any evidence or link suggesting that when nomads settled into ...
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On what grounds can a democratic state prohibit pornography?

On what grounds can the state, presumably - a democratic state, interfere to prohibit or limit its subjects from producing, distributing and consuming pornography? Does the state have any right to ...
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Can Suicide be Rational?

The concept of rational suicide occasionally occurs in context of ethical questions, such as whether or not there are any circumstances in which physician-assisted suicide would be morally acceptable. ...
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What sets apart humans from other animals? [duplicate]

What sets apart humans from other animals? Is it rationality? Or morality? If humans are inherently rational animals then why are they so often irrational in judgments and decisions? And if humans are ...
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The question of the legitimacy of regimes [closed]

What makes a regime legitimate? What are the conditions under which the legitimacy of a regime ends? Or more narrowly: What philosophical schools within political philosophy address this question, and ...
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What are counterarguments against abortions in rape cases to the Thomson paper?

Came here from Christianity StackExchange "A Defense of Abortion" (Thomson): You wake up in the morning and find yourself back to back in bed with an unconscious violinist. A famous unconscious ...
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Philosophers that loved women and philosophers that despised women [closed]

What are the views of significant philosophers on women? It would be very nice to have a systematic list. For example, Schopenhauer was an extreme sexist regarding women, labeling them as "stupid", ...
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Is Kant's first axiom precise?

The Categorical Imperative is generally stated with two axioms: Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law Any person who is a ...