Conflicting Moral Arguments : Louis Vaughn 's Philosophy, Moral Relativism And Moral Objectivism

872 Words Mar 1st, 2016 4 Pages
Conflicting Moral Arguments
Louis Vaughn states that the purpose of morality is not to describe how things are, but to “prescribe how things should be” (2). In Philosophy, moral relativism and moral objectivism are two conflicting but somewhat overlapping school of thought. These beliefs govern the way an individual acts; they also decide the ethical guidelines from which the law is written. In this essay we will delineate the differences between the two sects of belief.
Pojman asserts that many people self-report as moral subjectivists; he writes that humans fall victim to rashly praising relativism for its tolerance of other cultures. He cautions that when individuals’ morals are subjectively graded, then “notions of good and bad, right or wrong, cease to have interpersonal evaluative meaning” (33). For example, deeds of injustice, such as indiscriminate killing and theft, are forgivable because each individuals are arguably entitled to their subjective morals.
Moral relativism explains plenty of cultural differences. It allows different societies to have different standards of rightness and validates them. John Ladd details, “[as a result,] whether or not it is right for individuals to act a certain way depends on the society to which they belong” (31). He concludes that there is no absolute or universal moral standard by which all men abide by. By combining the diversity thesis (each culture is different) and the dependency thesis (people act differently dependent of…
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