The Blue Folders Story: How Not to Defend Objective Moral Values

I think I first heard this story while listening to a debate between Michael Horner and Henry Morgentaler, but since then I've seen it or heard it repeated many other times. The story is supposed to illustrate that even people who claim to be moral relativists really do believe that objective moral values exist. Here is how Victor Reppert puts it. Lewis's first argument is the argument from implied practice. People are, at best, inconsistent moral subjectivists. He writes:[quotation of C.S. … [Read more...]

Brigham Young: Racist Prophet of the Mormons – Part 3

In January of 1852, Brigham Young encouraged the Utah territorial legislature to pass a law that prohibitted sex between white people and black people, and publically declared that black people (or people with a black grandparent or great grandparent) "Cannot hold the priesthood": ======================================= Mormon Anti-Miscegenation in Utah Law Brigham Young addressed the Utah territorial legislature on January 6, 1852 to push through a law that not only legalized slavery in the … [Read more...]

Brigham Young: Racist Prophet of the Mormons – Part 2

It is not clear why Brigham Young followed the racist pro-slavery views of Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery from 1836 instead of the more liberal-minded abolitionist views of Joseph Smith from 1842 to 1844.  However, confronting the reality of mixed-race marriages and sex between black men and white women appears to have pushed Young further in the direction of racist beliefs and practices: ================================= One of the most significant, and simultaneously most obscure marriages … [Read more...]

Brigham Young: Racist Prophet of the Mormons – Part 1

Brigham Young was a racist white man who initiated racial discrimination into the official policies and practices of the Mormon church (more specifically: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the largest denomination of the Latter Day Saint movement).One key racist policy of the Mormons was to exclude blacks from "the priesthood". In the Mormon faith "priesthood" was not limited to just a few select members of the church (as in the Catholic faith). Any adult male or boy who is … [Read more...]

Terence Cuneo Reviews C. Stephen Evans’ new book, God and Moral Obligation

The review is found at Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews here. … [Read more...]

Richard Schoenig’s New Paper: “Objective Ethics Without Religion”

Abstract: Theists frequently aver that atheism is incompatible with moral realism (the view that there are objective moral facts). This paper defends a justifiable objective moral code, termed ethical rationalism (ER), that does not depend on the existence of any supernatural being. ER is a seven-principle moral code comprising two general prescriptions: do not harm others and help them whenever feasible. It is argued that ER (and hence objective morality) is justified by the fact that all moral … [Read more...]

Really Handy Survey of Metaethics

I have no idea if the site posting this actually has the copyright permissions to do this or not, but there is a site with the entire copy of Walter Sinnott-Armstrong's book, Moral Skepticisms, available as a PDF file.For those of you with an interest in learning more about metaethics--such as the distinction between "moral metaphysics" (moral ontology), "moral linguistics" (moral semantics), and so forth, check out pages 5-7 of the PDF file, especially the diagram on page 6. … [Read more...]

Louise Antony on Divine Goodness

I'm reading Debating Christian Theism, based on Keith Parsons's recommendation. I just finished reading the essays by Paul Copan and Louise Antony debating moral arguments for God's existence. Antony's essay ends with a very interesting point. In a way, it’s puzzling why, of all God’s attributes, moral goodness is the one held to be constituted merely by God’s possessing it. God is omniscient, but what’s true is not held to be true in virtue of God’s believing it; God is omnipotent, but somethin … [Read more...]


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