Saturday, October 17, 2015
"Morally Acceptable" May Still Mean "But a Bad Idea"
There is an interesting comparison of actions that a majority of Americans now find "morally acceptable" which most Americans used to reject.
I think that this question is misleading, and is becoming more so. My students are very reluctant to pronounce anything morally unacceptable, or always wrong. Yet I do not think their underlying position has actually changed that much. It is not that they find formerly abhorrent actions to now be acceptable. It is that they don't want to pronounce moral absolutes in case someone comes up with some wild desert-island counter-case.
I think an additional question wording would be revealing. We should ask, "Do you think doing X is almost always a bad idea?"
I believe on that standard we would see that there has been less change in American morality than some fear.