Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [ethics]

For questions about ethics, a branch of philosophy dealing with morality, justice, virtue, vice, good and evil.

2
votes
4answers
1k views

A doctor saves lives, but he is a murderer in normal life. Is he good or bad? Or Both? [on hold]

Is he or is he not? Does the society accept him/her like that? This question came up to my mind when my father mentioned about a professional killer whose nickname was The Iceman. Normal life means ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Any contemporary/older philosophers who criticize the Christian concept of “preservation in the memory of others”? [on hold]

I'm trying to sort out my ideas, so bear with me here if my questions is not abundantly clear. There's a Christian understanding that when one dies, only the body dies, therefore, the spirit remains, ...
51
votes
11answers
13k views

Does human life have innate value over that of other animals?

Does human life have innate value over that of other animals? If so, why? And is it wrong to murder another human, but morally permissible to hunt or fish?
5
votes
5answers
171 views

If you know something has the potential to be sentient is it unethical to intentionally prevent it from gaining sentience?

In Star Trek TNG, TOS and Voyager they at some point debate what sentience is and what makes a person a person. Picard with Data/Moriarty, Janeway with The Doctor/holos, Kirk and Spock with the Horta ...
7
votes
5answers
261 views

Frustration in studying philosophy

I have a question about why philosophers seem to disagree on virtually everything. I have been reading up on philosophy since I was 16 (now 19) with the goal of finding an end solution to the ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

Are there any solutions to the Euthyphro dilemma?

Is there a way to believe that God is the source of morality without also having to believe that morality is arbitrary?
0
votes
1answer
54 views

If people didn’t have a moral sense, would we still have enforced cultural moral codes?

Diverse, contradictory, and bizarre as they are, people commonly feel that everyone ought to conform to their culture’s moral norms and even feel violators deserve punishment, though perhaps that ...
0
votes
3answers
78 views

Is “showing-off” ethical? [closed]

The argument can be made that "showing-off" is not ethical since that behaviour will likely make other people jealous and feel bad about themselves. But on the other hand, jealousy and self-loathing ...
2
votes
4answers
78 views

How do utilitarians defend their moral philosophy against the impracticality objection?

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11098-005-3021-y This paper made me think what there's left for Utilitarianism when "utilitarians are worried about the impracticality objection, they ...
6
votes
3answers
132 views

Is Socrates' happiness possible for average, normal people?

Socrates talked a big game in the Republic: we don't need money, family or friends to be happy; all that requires is that we pursue truth and wisdom. I can sort of see how this can make sense for ...
8
votes
5answers
16k views

Would Kant choose to sacrifice one life to save another?

If what I know about Kant is correct- watching the Harvard Justice series on Kant and some summaries of his work- then Kant believes in an absolute morality where everything is either right or wrong ...
-9
votes
2answers
3k views

Why do the professional mathematicians believe blindly in so meaningless concepts as Infinity? [closed]

To refute such a concept as Infinity (or many infinities) in mathematics doesn't at all require all that big efforts mainly from its own definition in mathematics. To explain this very simple fiction ...
3
votes
2answers
75 views

Can there be objective moral facts that have no innate imperative bindingness – what everyone ought to do regardless of their needs and preferences?

My interest is in presenting results from the science of social morality in ways that will be culturally useful. (This science is the study of the origins and function of behaviors motivated by our ...
7
votes
2answers
488 views

Is it immoral to pay taxes if your government conducts immoral activities?

Assume your government participates in immoral wars that are unjust according to your personal beliefs and religious doctrine (for example Christian just war theory), is giving support to the ...
0
votes
2answers
79 views

What does it mean for something to be “evil”?

Is evil a perception or is it something that is objective? Here's my line of thought on it: "If evil were a perception then the law would be moot to some extent. However, if evil were objective then ...
2
votes
3answers
159 views

Is this argument about abortion being both right and wrong valid or invalid?

Abortion is either right or wrong. If it is right, then people should be allowed to kill fetuses. Killing fetuses is wrong. Hence, abortion is not right. If it is wrong, then women won’t have the ...
-3
votes
3answers
156 views

How is Cannibalism any different from eating animals and plants? [closed]

I'm stuck thinking that Both are similar and thus equivalent. Am I wrong?
5
votes
3answers
261 views
2
votes
0answers
113 views

How do compatibilists understand “responsible”?

In Scott Christensen's book "What about free will?" on page 119 is "Pharaoh is held responsible for his actions". The reason given for God attributing culpability is "You are exalting yourself...". ...
2
votes
3answers
104 views

Aside from Jesus who have put justice (legalism) and friendliness (benevolence) in opposition?

I'm more interested in ancient thinkers. Maybe there are notable people with such views who lived before Jesus. I will use the term friendliness as a treatment of someone as a potential friend. And a ...
4
votes
1answer
95 views

Has anyone used Aristotle's philosophy to study social media?

It is my understanding that Aristotle believed one shouldn't work too many hours in the day (I am currently having a hard time finding any references on this, sorry). He (or maybe this was just the ...
0
votes
2answers
62 views

If you “know best”, should you refuse to fulfil your previously sworn duty? [closed]

Say you are a law-maker elected to represent the views of a population in the legislature. The population are specifically and deliberately asked how to proceed on a political issue and use the ...
4
votes
7answers
197 views

What am I missing in texts that say things that are so obvious as to seem pointless?

I'm currently taking a course in early modern philosophy. The focus is on psychology, morality, and aesthetics. I've taken philosophy courses in the past, but I'm having a lot of trouble with this one,...
0
votes
2answers
130 views

What does it mean exactly to live a good life in a place like earth?

I don’t know what living a good life means - people say being honest, truthful, generous, or to possess and practice many of the most important virtues. But all these things depend upon the way we ...
26
votes
12answers
4k views

What arguments would support a secular pro-life position?

I've been thinking about the pro-life position (by "pro-life" I mean the position that abortion should be illegal. I.e. on par with murder) for awhile, and it is normally presented as a religious ...
6
votes
1answer
67 views

What did Confucius mean by saying that the 'rectification of names' is the first thing required to rule a state?

In Analects XII, a disciple asked Confucius the right principle of government whereupon Confucious said: The one thing needed first is the rectification of names. What did Confucius mean by this?
6
votes
3answers
357 views

The relationship of women's right to abortion and men's duty of child support

There is a quote from Karen DeCrow, which you can find below. The courts have properly determined that a man should neither be able to force a woman to have an abortion nor to prevent her from ...
2
votes
1answer
42 views
3
votes
4answers
105 views

Does this experiment really prove dishonesty?

The experiment: People are asked to guess the outcome of a coin flip. If they guess correctly, they get a reward. However, people only reveal their initial guess after they've seen the outcome of ...
2
votes
6answers
184 views

Would it be morally wrong for an AI to intentionally harm “inferior” and “irrational” humans?

Suppose in the future we develop super intelligent AI beings, which in addition to their superior intelligence, also posses superior powers of rationality, emotional capacity, and free will. Now ...
0
votes
1answer
45 views

What is Don Marquis argument that a being does not have to be a person to have a right to life; even potential persons have a right to life?

The original Don Marquis paper "Why Abortion is Immoral". Many moral theories agree that the bearers of rights should be “persons”, not merely biological humans. What are the counter-arguments for it?...
1
vote
1answer
33 views

According to Nozick, what is a “patterned” conception of justice?

Any examples of a policy issue on which a patterned conception of justice might plausibly disagree with a historical entitlement based conception of justice
-1
votes
0answers
13 views

What are the examples of cases that would be judged differently by relational and Kantian conceptions of autonomy?

Relational concept of autonomy and Kantian concept of autonomy- Are there any examples from the real world where a case can be judged differently using these two aspects?
0
votes
2answers
82 views

Utilitarian Morality vs Kantian Morality

Does Utilitarian or Kantian Morality Approve : 1) Capital Punishment 2) Use of torture in interrogation of known terrorists
3
votes
0answers
66 views

How do the Officer's Oath and the Enlisted Oath interact

I've come across a military question which is so subtle that I think it has to be answered from a philosophical perspective, dealing with the meaning of "duty" and nuanced things like that. In many ...
0
votes
2answers
166 views

Defending the value of Moral Philosophy against Scientism

What are the best arguments against someone who believes 'Moral philosophy is useless, what we call morality is simply evolutionary instincts to do what we were designed to do as a species'. This ...
3
votes
7answers
384 views

Is arguing pro choice because “a woman has the right to control her body” invalid?

Is arguing pro choice because "a woman has the right to control her body" (very obviously) invalid? Says so here, that the argument already assumes that the conclusion of the whole debate, namely ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Ethical question: Student unknowingly benefitted from cheater [closed]

Hypothetical: Alice and Bob are students, and will be tested in a week. Bob steals a copy of the test (and answer key) ahead of time. Bob likes Alice, so he helps her prepare for the test, but doesn't ...
10
votes
7answers
629 views

Does being a moral atheist require being a vegetarian?

A semi-serious question: (a) Excluding the rare cases of atheists who are also dualists, most atheists are materialists who don't believe in souls. (b) Many such atheists are also moral/ethical ...
3
votes
5answers
210 views

If a moral law contains “If-then/Unless-then” clauses, is it still Kantian?

An argument against Kant's categorical imperative is the "hiding Jews from the Nazis" example: "Per the categorical imperative, you should never lie. Therefore if you are hiding Jews in the basement ...
2
votes
7answers
146 views

Is a selfish action that helps others worthy of praise?

TL:DR Is a selfish man who only does stuff for his own benefit, worthy of praise if his actions just so happen to help others? (And am I wrong in assuming someone always attempts to gain something?). ...
2
votes
1answer
135 views

Is harming others always considered bad?

Do any philosophers either explicitly avoid condemning harm, or condone it, especially harming others, in their ethics? Why do humans consider causing bad to others as bad and represent it as bad act ...
2
votes
3answers
112 views

Is it ethical to bot gambling sites?

There are some gambling sites online that give free money (approximately 0.5 $) to each registered account. Is it ethical to program a bot to create accounts for warranted profit ?
2
votes
7answers
86 views

How comes AI is expected to be ethical?

To question ethics of people doing science is completely legitimate to me. So, there can be ethically questionable things you research like bio-weapons or experiments on animals. Also for sure while ...
1
vote
0answers
53 views

Is this short summary of phenomenology accurate?

"Classical, pure phenomenology aims to comprehend “those structures of experience and understanding that permit different types of beings to show themselves as what they are.” It does this by ...
7
votes
1answer
156 views

The Moral Law and the Categorical Imperative in Kant

In the Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, Kant begins his task by developing, through analysis of ordinary moral concepts, a theory of the 'supreme principle of morals,' the criteria for a ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Are there counter examples to Kant's perfect duties?

Are there exceptions to Kant's perfect duties - duties always or never to do X? By this I mean, does the doctrine of perfect duties generate counter-examples - situations in which if we followed the ...
18
votes
6answers
3k views

Is God either immoral or not omnipotent?

The usual (Christian) justification for suffering/evil in the world created by a benevolent God is freedom of the will. However, the more interesting question is not about the source of evil (which ...
-5
votes
1answer
78 views

Why do peeps pursue reputation? [closed]

We have been told many times by many wise people (and in few ancient languages) to think of reputation as immaterial yet one sees characters wildly pursuing badges, titles, and funny hats. Why? ...
2
votes
1answer
99 views

Why/when would discrimination of people who do less, try less and pursue a path of “easiness” be wrong?

Why/when would discrimination of people who do less, try less and pursue a path of "easiness" be wrong? Since if we accept their attitude, then that would mean that we in some respect regard it "...