In Defense of the Moral Cause of Feminism

In the last few years I have written a lot both on behalf of social justice and on the need to elevate the discourse surrounding it. I can say unequivocally that the feminist blogosphere and my activist feminist friends have made me a far better ethicist, a far better person, and a far better man [Read More...]

Kinds of Pleasures

Thomas Hurka is one of my favorite moral philosophers.  His essay on Nietzsche found in the compilation Nietzsche and Morality is meaty and challenging both as a stark reading of Nietzsche and as a strong perfectionist view of ethics, developed on Nietzsche’s behalf.  I’ve also read most of his first book, Perfectionism, which was excellent. [Read More...]

A Map With A Few of My Paths to Objective Morality

Yesterday I kicked off a series called “Paths to Objective Morality”. In response to commenters vigorously challenging my choice of vocabulary in calling morality “objective”, I decided to lay out my justification for my word choice systematically and to explain how it will be justified in each of the major components of my overall account of [Read More...]

Paths to Moral Objectivity: Pragmatics

On this blog I regularly declare myself for “objective morality”. But what I mean by the term is often misunderstood. My views are a bit idiosyncratic. People typically need to read a handful of the right posts to get a full picture so that they can situate the context for any one post. Those who [Read More...]

On the Moral Value (and Dangers) of Dutifulness

What kinds of motives are morally relevant? Which are important? Why are they important? When are they important? How do they relate to one another? What are their respective places in the best overall moral framework? In a few posts I hope to answer such questions as these. I am going to distinguish various kinds [Read More...]

Hot, Passionate, Rational Sex

I posted to Facebook what I thought was a very interesting article about consent that argued it should be about asking a sexual partner whether they want something so that they have the chance to say “yes” rather than only pushing their boundaries until they say “no”. The idea was to look at consent as [Read More...]

Is Religious Circumcision of Male Infants Morally Defensible?

Last month a court in Cologne, Germany ruled against allowing the circumcision of children too young to give consent. CBS News summarized the facts: a German court ruled that circumcision infringes on a child’s right to be protected from bodily harm. The regional court in Cologne said that circumcision went against the “fundamental right of [Read More...]

How Ethics Is More Like Physics Than Faith

People who use the free speech that they take for granted in free societies to disparage moral philosophy as useless, superfluous, and incapable of progress since it does not function like a natural science are as naive and guilty of practical contradiction as people who use the internet to talk about how science can not attain any genuine truths because it cannot square its own metaphysical foundations or tell us about the meaning of life. [Read more...]

In Which I Answer Leah Libresco's Moral Philosophy Concerns So You Don't Become A Catholic Too

Leah Libresco was an irreligious person with little interest in religious issues until as a Yale undergraduate she began dating a Catholic, reading Catholic theology and apologetics, and going to church with him. She wrote a blog about her process of weighing Catholicism against atheism. Recently, she converted to Catholicism. I have previously analyzed some of [Read More...]


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