Are Sex and Morality Merely “Evolutionary Tricks”?

Francis Collins trots out a familiar old argument against atheism.  The argument is that if there is no God then our morality is an illusion.  Collins’s presentation of this argument features an unusual and suspicious spin.  Collins knows that arguments can be made from evolutionary psychology that broadly moral thinking seems to have evolved in [Read More...]

For God or Morality? On Those Who’d Hold Morality Hostage For Faith

In his recent critique of Francis Collins, the Christian Evangelical and geneticist recently appointed by Obama to head the National Institutes of Health, Sam Harris referenced the slides from one of Collins’s speeches.  I want to take two posts (but possibly more if there are comments or if I otherwise have extra relevant ideas on [Read More...]

Coyne Vs. The Dogma That Religion Aids Moral Progress

As part of a 9 page critical review of Robert Wright’s The Evolution of God, Jerry Coyne levels more than a few incisive challenges countering Wright’s faith in religion as an indispensible aid to moral progress.  Here are just a few of Coyne’s key points. First he enlists David Hume to challenge Wright’s assumption that [Read More...]

Call It Volitional Love Rather Than Unconditional Love

Earlier today I posted Brendan Palla’s reply to my posts on unconditional love and love in general.  In what follows, I have interspersed my replies to him within the stream of his argument. I want to open with a bit of a critique. I don’t think you’ve captured very well the notion of unconditional love [Read More...]

A Challenge To My Critique Of Unconditional Love

A week ago I posted twice on the theme of love, spending the first post on what I saw to be conceptual problems for the ideal of unconditional love and then focusing the second post on a constructive attempt to characterize love and then locating unconditional love within that new framework. The next day, Brendan [Read More...]

An Argument For Gay Marriage And Against Traditionalism

I am puzzled by appeals to history to oppose gay marriage because history is only the story of what people have done and never of itself directly tells us anything about right or wrong.  Results of history can serve as warnings about effective and uneffective approaches to goal x or goal y but what people [Read More...]

How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count The Ways

In the first part of this series, I explored the reasons for rejecting “unconditional” love as a candidate for the ideal essence of love since as a concept it is riddled with numerous problems as a recommendation for human psychology it is hopelessly unrealistic. In this part of the series, I sketch out a theory [Read More...]

Peter Singer Argues We Must Ration Health Care

His article is long, here are just a few key pieces: In Britain, everyone has health insurance. In the U.S., some 45 million do not, and nor are they entitled to any health care at all, unless they can get themselves to an emergency room. Hospitals are prohibited from turning away anyone who will be [Read More...]

Kantian Reasons To Lie To The Murderer At The Door?

Michael Cholbi thinks he has some: First, the lie is not meant to advance the happiness either of the liar or of the potential murder victim, but to thwart the abuse of the victim’s autonomy that her murder would represent. Hence, if lying to the murderer is manipulation at all, it is manipulation in the [Read More...]


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