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Questions tagged [ethics]

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

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Compelling example of difference between intended consequences and foreseen but unintended consequences?

I am trying to get inside the head of individuals who believe that there is a difference between acting in such a way that someone's death foreseeably results from your actions, but that this was not ...
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3answers
185 views

Wanted: literature on the ethics of creating a fake world (The morality of God)

WARNING (reader discretion is advised. Don't do these experiments if you are not familiar with existential philosophy or if you suffer from some mental disorder) This question is subtle. I think ...
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3answers
89 views

Introspection to look for what I'm missing [closed]

I'm new in this area and I would like to ask some questions about introspection. About me I'm 22 years old. I'm bachelor in computer science. I live with my parents, I'm the only child, I work for ...
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4answers
147 views

Is injustice the “Achilles Heel” of materialism?

Under materialism (the notion that origins of the world and human society are unguided natural processes), it may be difficult to ground ethics in reality but nevertheless, materialists can be ...
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2answers
79 views

Can I say that I hold a Facebook executive morally responsible for this or that market strategy?

Imagine there is a job opening at Facebook. Otherwise attractive and matching my skill set, I still decide not to apply. And why? There were certain strategies employed by the company (for example, ...
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2answers
144 views

Do objective improvements to descriptive ethics always improve normative ethics?

Robert Nozick provided an argument against Utilitarianism called Experience Machine. The argument involves only the "Is" part: "We have reason not to plug into the experience machine." But this makes ...
2
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2answers
125 views

Is Google Duplex unethical if it doesn’t specifically identify itself as a non-human?

The recent Google Duplex demo caused a firestorm of criticism online. One of the things that I kept hearing was that it was an unethical deception for an AI system to present itself as a human caller....
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1answer
44 views

Do ethics give an answer what should be done to someone who made a “right” or “wrong” decision?

Recently I saw Heinz's dilemma and actually I found that none of the actions or purposes is really wrong or right to me. But I found that punishing (e.g. imprisoning) Heinz (in the case he steals the ...
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2answers
134 views

What was the popular moral philosophy at the time when Kant lived?

On Wikipedia it is said: In Section II, Kant starts from scratch and attempts to move from popular moral philosophy to a metaphysics of morals. Therefore, there was some kind of popular moral ...
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1answer
42 views

Ethical Considerations in Relation to Allowing Children with Gender Dysphoria to Begin HRT Before the Age of 18 [closed]

In recent current events, there have been several bills in the United States and in Canada that propose that the government should be able to remove children with gender dysphoria from households ...
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0answers
49 views

Introductory Text to Ethics

I'm looking for an introductory text into philosophical inquiry of ethics. I need this text to be exceedingly accessible (i.e. high school or undergraduate level) but still sufficiently ...
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7answers
3k views

What ethical studies have been performed on what would happen if a government raises kids without parents?

This is a thought experiment that deals with morality and ethics: Due to low natality governments decide to create schools in which kids are raised by professional caregivers and people trained ...
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4answers
130 views

Does making recreational drug use illegal undermine the autonomy of a drug addict?

Say that I’m a drug user I'm aware that such drugs are harmful. Nevertheless, I still want to use them. If the government bans recreational drug use on the basis that they’re harmful to individuals ...
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2answers
269 views

How does Kant's absolute obligation to obey the law square with existence of unfair laws?

According to Corlett's "Is There a Moral Duty to Obey the Law?" It is a self-contradiction, Kant argues, for the law to contain within itself a law permitting citizens to disobey it. ...
3
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4answers
113 views

When do we say something evil has happened?

A dog bit me for no reason. I was riding my bike when suddenly a street dog came from the side and bit me.Such an incident never had happened in my life before. I wondered why but I could not find any ...
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7answers
745 views

Is it moral to obey the law?

To be clear, I am not asking if laws are moral, or even a good approximation for a moral system. We understand that there can be moral laws and immoral laws. For example, the law prohibiting murder is ...
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5answers
128 views

Aristotle on unconditional vs universal goods

From Nicomachean Ethics V1, 1129b1: Since an unjust person is greedy, however, he will be concerned with goods---not with all of them but with those that are matters of good and bad luck, which are ...
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3answers
746 views

At what level of self confidence are you narcissistic?

If you look online to find the traits of narcissism, you will see that includes; a self appraisal that you are a natural born leader, That you have more talent than skill, and you are overconfident ...
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1answer
39 views

Would depriving other beings of higher cognitive function be unethical? [closed]

If, somehow, you could give every animal on Earth boosted intelligence, cognitive function, etc, would it be unethical/selfish not to?
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1answer
105 views

On what basis something is wrong? [closed]

Why murder, robbery et al. is wrong? Is suffering to others a criteria to decide whether something is wrong or not? - any act which can cause psychological, emotional or physical pain is wrong. But ...
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1answer
69 views

The tags for the 21st century philosophy

What are the tags, if I'd like to read something about 21st century philosophy? Where do I find the list of the greatest philosophers of the 21st century? Is it true that the pure philosophy is in ...
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17answers
19k views

Why is a lion not evil?

One often hears the claim that animals who kill and such, are not in fact evil. The typical example is that of a lion or a tiger that kills a prey. The argument is more or less that the animal acts ...
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1answer
64 views

Can one pursue humanistic goals while being a successful entrepreneur? [closed]

I have read books from Erich Fromm and others and I gathered understanding of what a human being is capable of (in a good way). In relation to work, it's being creative, in the true sense of the word. ...
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4answers
90 views

Grounds for morality in subjective idealistic reality?

In objective reality we are all sharing the same physical world, thus our actions affect other real beings, laying some grounds for morality, at the very least the "do onto others" and its invert. ...
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1answer
306 views

How does ethics influence epistemology?

I was thinking about the connection between ethics and epistemology. I understand there is a whole sub-field of philosophy (moral epistemology) that concerns itself with how epistemology affects our ...
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1answer
50 views

All evil is potential vitality in need of transformation

I just learned about Sheldon Kopp on this forum, and I love his list of "eternal truths." Of course, I don't yet understand all of them, including this one: All evil is potential vitality in need ...
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2answers
71 views

Is this analogy right? [closed]

If a human murders another human it makes him murderer If I sometimes do stupid things does it make me stupid?
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3answers
125 views

Can philosophy say that these precepts are wrong?

If we take the ambiguous nature[1] (in its current form) of the sixth commandment... Thou shalt not kill ...we must remember that Jesus instructed his followers to forgive[2], that none are ...
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15answers
14k views

What are the ethical problems with flipping a coin to decide in the trolley problem?

My understanding is that John M. Taurek suggests that, in the trolley problem we should flip a coin when deciding between saving 5 lives versus 1 life (assuming we do not know any of these people). He ...
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1answer
216 views

A possible 6th prima facie duty (W.D. Ross)?

Does anybody have some ideas as to what Ross could be missing as a prima facie duty? One idea that I have is the duty of empathy. This could be a 6th duty because acting beneficently could require ...
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3answers
1k views

Applying the Mere Means principle

I am trying to understand Kant's Second Categorical Imperative: Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never merely as a means to an ...
2
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1answer
139 views

Is this quote from Aristotle?

I can't find the source for this quote which apparently belongs to Aristotle. Any ideas? Thanks! First, have a definite, clear practical ideal; a goal, an objective. Second, have the necessary ...
2
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1answer
124 views

How does it make sense to talk about meritocracy?

To talk about meritocracy to me sounds a bit meaningless. If we have a system S and a person P within system S who is capable of actions A and those actions lead to rewards R, then we may define ...
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7answers
471 views

What are the arguments for and against the idea that sex is bad as concept? [closed]

I see that majority of adults are trying to hide the notions of sex from minors. Both parents from their children and legislators from all children through various laws. I also see some critique ...
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2answers
53 views

Is it ethically wrong to refuse a suffering person the right to assisted suicide? [closed]

In South Africa, assisted suicide if illegal irrespective of circumstances. Let's say you are a judge of a high court and the following case comes before you: A terminally ill patient suffers from ...
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6answers
106 views

bypass for morality, proof of consciousness

Logically morality can stem from thinking that other people are just as living / human as yourself, so you shouldn't do to others what you don't want to be done to you. But this can be bypassed by ...
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2answers
272 views

Is Epicureanism more like egoism or utilitarianism

Epicureans put a focus on pleasure, but it is unclear from any material I've seen whether this the goal is one's own pleasure, the pleasure of everyone equally, or some more complicated interaction. ...
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1answer
105 views

Freedom and euthanasia [closed]

A person is better off when free- if follow it to particular issue of individual freedom like euthanasia as Some of the developed country following this principle ?What are the issues if we follow ...
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1answer
125 views

What is the exact relationship between empathy and evil?

In common parlance, we label people who lack empathy as "evil". That is, people who commit acts of evil because they cannot put themselves in the shoes of their victims are seen as evil. Why is this? ...
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3answers
123 views

Does ought imply can?

It's been a common staple of philosophy that this holds. Thus, on determinism, is moral ought even possible? Assuming determinism is true, does saying "You should do X" make sense? For if things are ...
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5answers
490 views

Are boycotts distinct from force? When are boycotts ethical?

I have sometimes participated in boycotts in the past. But it seems to me that I’m seeing more and more boycotts attempted all the time, and I’m becoming uncomfortable with them. Boycotts now seem to ...
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0answers
92 views

Specific arguments for moral realism

I'm having great difficulty so far getting specific arguments for this position. Thus far what I've found are arguments that every other position is flawed and thus false. I'm looking for some that ...
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6answers
2k views

Can the act of having certain thoughts be unethical? [duplicate]

On the basis of Western morality, the Greco-Roman Judeo-Christian one, behaviors like killing, betraying, cursing are considered immoral. Christianity imposes that thoughts can be corrupt, therefore ...
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3answers
204 views

Why are euthanasia and suicide considered inhumane?

With animals, when they are in considerable pain or suffering from a terminal condition, it's typically considered humane to euthanize them as a way to minimize suffering. However, with humans, the ...
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1answer
150 views

Critique of Nietzsche's 'Ressentiment'?

I know roughly what Nietzsche conceives 'ressentiment' to be, basically the inability to react to (and hence festering of) the feeling of being oppressed and powerless over a long time. Does anyone ...
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3answers
119 views

Are moral obligations real?

Are moral obligations real? For examples of moral obligations, I raise politics: to hold elections that allow voters to determine a change in government authority seems to be a moral obligation for ...
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2answers
61 views

Evolution of society's adoption of various ethics theories

Aquinas, Hume, Bentham, Kant, Nietzsche, Moore, Singer, Gilligan Over the centuries, has the general public (and the justice systems), by and large, adopted the theories of leading contemporary ...
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3answers
272 views

The philosophical relationship of morality, rationalism, atheism and physicalism

I am an atheist and I hold a physicalist view of the world, that the world is made but of one kind of stuff (call it "physical", if you want) and the universe is composed only of one kind of ...
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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 ...
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1answer
153 views

How can Kantianism prove the existence of perfect duties?

I heard about Kant's reasoning that lying that you return money or about the leads to contradiction in conception. But how could he even prove that lying under any circumstances leads to ...