Points of Disagreement

1455 WordsFeb 22, 20186 Pages
Points of Disagreement The “Golden Rule” is an ethical idea shared in various religious texts and different ancient philosophers’ statements around the world, and it was paraphrased as “What you do not wish done to yourself, do not do to others”. Kwame Anthony Appiah argues in the fifth Chapter (Moral Disagreement) of his book Cosmopolitanism that “the Golden Rule is not as helpful as it might at first seem”, and he gives several examples to support his argument. However, I don’t think these examples are solid enough to overthrow the Golden Rule. Because we can only discuss the pros and cons of the Golden Rule after we share this idea. Besides, I have a different view toward the Golden Rule than Appiah. I prefer to believe it is a passive, constricted admonition that keep society in basic order. The spirit transited by the Golden Rule is especially needed in the society which is not based on a full-fledged legal system, and the Golden Rule is also served as a necessary ethic principle to guarantee the cross-cultural conversation. Appiah argues that the Golden Rule is hard to be applied in practice because it is hard to understand and share others’ values, and the Golden Rule is powerless facing the differences in values. The example he uses is that a doctor wanted to save his patient’s life through blood transfusion. The problem is that his patient was a racist and the blood came from an African American. The doctor should not do nothing, however the patient may refuse
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