Moral Philosophers, Role Models, and Hypocrisy

Does being a moral philosopher obligate you to be a moral role model? And when is hypocrisy evidence against a moral philosophy? [Read more...]

“You Can’t Stop Teenagers From Having Sex”

Don’t say “You can’t stop teenagers from having sex”. It’s not true. You can stop some of them. (I held out! And I know plenty of others who did too.) You just can’t stop enough of them with abstinence-only stuff and you just shouldn’t AIM to stop all of them with repressive anti-sex messaging. And you shouldn’t send the message to teenagers that every teenager has sex. That just says “everyone is doing it”, which pressures them to do it and makes them feel bad about themselves when they can’t find a partner or don’t want one. [Read more...]

When All That Abstinence Fetishism Goes Too Far…

Did you hear about this young evangelical couple in Topeka?? Jon and Darla Crocker, who dutifully abstained from sex during their 14-month courtship, have remained abstinent after marriage and plan to do so indefinitely. “If it was holy before, it must be double-holy afterwards,” Darla says. They have now completed 25 months of marriage without [Read More...]

Philosophical Advice For Dealing With A Bad Mother With Medical Needs

Hi Dan! I have a question for you! What do you think one’s moral obligations are to an ailing parent who parented very poorly? I had what seems to me to have been a very rough childhood. My parents divorced when I was four and my mom pretty much neglected me. She stayed out all [Read More...]

You Don’t Kill Hateful Words’ Powers By Ignoring Them

The problems discussed in the middle section of this post’s essay are epitomized in various ways by this video: The Stoics, with some wisdom that is in need of some qualification, advise us to always be mindful about the difference between what we can control and what we cannot. Stoics typically argue that we are [Read More...]

Talking About Gay Marriage and Prostitution on The Ashley F. Miller Show

Ashely F. Miller of the blog Ashley F. Miller hosted her inaugural episode of The Ashley F. Miller Show and Mavaddat Javid and I were her guests. First we speculated about the prospects for this week’s Supreme Court rulings on Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act. Then we talked about themes brought up in [Read More...]

Forward Thinking: The Ethics of Challenging Each Other’s Identities

In this post I explore some of the ways that our beliefs, values, commitments, behaviors, etc. constitute ourselves and how our commitments to various ideas, institutions and practices, etc. also contribute fundamentally to our identity. In light of this, I explore the moral difficulties that potentially arise when we intellectually challenge these things. [Read more...]

Intent Is Not Magic, But It Still Matters

Sometimes we hurt others without intending to do so. Often in these cases, we typically feel it a matter of paramount importance to clarify our intentions and demonstrate that they were not malicious, and that the harm our actions did was accidental. This makes sense and is legitimate in that whether we are perceived as [Read More...]

Shades of Cruelty

How BDSM is like sour candies, cannibalism is like white chocolate, and violence is like cinnamon. [Read more...]


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