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Old 18th July 2017, 06:33 AM   #601
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Let's bring this moral relativism back to the topic.

The Confederate memorial was erected in the mid-1910s in St. Louis. This was 50ish years after the Civil War, 30ish years after Reconstruction, and another 40ish years until the Civil Rights Movement. Further, it was erected in an area that was solidly on the Union side of the war.

So, right off the top, we can falsify the notion that the monument was, in any way, memorializing local heroes of the Confederacy. There were few, if any, from that area.

Next, if we're going to use the moral context of the time, it is not the times of Civil War. It is the moral context of the early 1910s, roughly the midway point of the Jim Crow era. As pointed out numerous times, this memorial was part of the Lost Cause movement to disassociate the Confederacy from slavery, in this case by the Daughters Of The Confederacy. So, Emily's Cat, how are we to judge this monument within the moral standards of that context?


Where does it end? Should we not pass moral judgement on segregationists because they products of their times? Should we not pass moral judgement on white supremacists today because they are product of their times?

Should we never look at the broader context?
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Old 18th July 2017, 09:57 AM   #602
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
You're still ignoring what people are saying. You cannot just willy-nilly claim moral relativism. You cannot excuse moral decisions when alternatives were available, especially when these same alternatives are the ones they explicitly railed against.
And you're missing that the "moral" decision is the one that ultimately won!

Let's try a couple of more recent examples, where it's not as cut-and-dried, because we don't have the luxury of hindsight.

Is it immoral for a woman to breastfeed her child in public?
Is it immoral for a muslim woman to show herself in public with her head uncovered?

Those topics are contentious right now. Some people consider them to be immoral and unacceptable. Some people do not. Which is correct? Is there a clearly definitive right answer?

Some people rail against women showing their hair in public. They believe they are arguing from a position of moral authority and moral righteousness. Are they wrong?

If they win, and it becomes illegal and taboo for a woman to show her hair in public, then that will become the standard of behavior as defined by society. Case in point - any number of middle eastern nations under sharia law. At that point, they can look back at those times in history where women went about with their heads uncovered, and unambiguously claim that to be a morally heinous act?

Just because there is disagreement about a topic of morality at a point in time, doesn't mean that either side of that argument is objectively and unambiguously correct about it. Once consensus is reached and that viewpoint becomes the standard viewpoint, then we can objectively claim that a topic is moral or immoral NOW, but claiming it to have been unambiguously moral or immoral at a point in time where there was not universal agreement is to retroactively apply the mores of our time onto history.

***ETA: Acknowledging that different standards of morality exist in different times and in different cultures is not even remotely close to arguing that all of those views ought to be tolerated by OUR society in OUR time. It doesn't even mean we should refrain from arguing against those things in OTHER societies that we in OUR society and OUR time view as immoral - we should. Everyone should be allowed to hold to their moral beliefs, and should also be allowed to argue their view of morality with others - that's how an eventual consensus is reached. It's the retroactive judgment of moral status conferred upon past societies that I disagree with.
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Old 18th July 2017, 10:05 AM   #603
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Is it immoral for a woman to breastfeed her child in public?
No.

Quote:
Is it immoral for a muslim woman to show herself in public with her head uncovered?
No.

Quote:
Those topics are contentious right now. Some people consider them to be immoral and unacceptable. Some people do not. Which is correct? Is there a clearly definitive right answer?
Yes.

Quote:
Some people rail against women showing their hair in public. They believe they are arguing from a position of moral authority and moral righteousness. Are they wrong?
Yes.

Quote:
If they win, and it becomes illegal and taboo for a woman to show her hair in public, then that will become the standard of behavior as defined by society. Case in point - any number of middle eastern nations under sharia law. At that point, they can look back at those times in history where women went about with their heads uncovered, and unambiguously claim that to be a morally heinous act.
They can claim it, but they'd still be wrong. What meaning do you find in "the standard of behaviour as defined by society" that makes you think it defines morality?

Quote:
Just because there is disagreement about a topic of morality at a point in time, doesn't mean that either side of that argument is objectively and unambiguously correct about it.
Sure, they might both be wrong.

Quote:
Once consensus is reached and that viewpoint becomes the standard viewpoint, then we can objectively claim that a topic is moral or immoral NOW,
No we can't. Consensus is meaningless in moral questions. The topic of this thread is a case in point: everyone* agreeing that slavery is right still wouldn't make it so.

Quote:
but claiming it to have been unambiguously moral or immoral at a point in time where there was not universal agreement is to retroactively apply the mores of our time onto history.
No, it isn't. We can take into account the culture and knowledge of the time and still say that they were wrong.

*I'm assuming it would be everyone except the slaves here...
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Old 18th July 2017, 10:08 AM   #604
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
***ETA: Acknowledging that different standards of morality exist in different times and in different cultures is not even remotely close to arguing that all of those views ought to be tolerated by OUR society in OUR time. It doesn't even mean we should refrain from arguing against those things in OTHER societies that we in OUR society and OUR time view as immoral - we should. Everyone should be allowed to hold to their moral beliefs, and should also be allowed to argue their view of morality with others - that's how an eventual consensus is reached. It's the retroactive judgment of moral status conferred upon past societies that I disagree with.
What's there to discuss? You've defined morality as "standard of behavior as defined by society". If that's true, then the only thing to discuss is "what standard of behaviour has society defined for this particular circumstance?". Do an opinion poll, and you've got your answer to all moral questions.

If someone says "you know, all these slaves are people just like you and me, but they are surfing misery and toil. This doesn't seem good to me, I think it's wrong." The response need be only "Society has defined slavery as good, therefore it is." And if your definition of morality is valid, then that response is reasonable and there should be no further discussion.
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Old 18th July 2017, 11:26 AM   #605
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
And you're missing that the "moral" decision is the one that ultimately won!

So if the North had lost, and the South seceded, would slavery have thus been as unambiguously moral as it is now unambiguously immoral?

Quote:
Everyone should be allowed to hold to their moral beliefs, and should also be allowed to argue their view of morality with others - that's how an eventual consensus is reached. It's the retroactive judgment of moral status conferred upon past societies that I disagree with.
Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
No we can't. Consensus is meaningless in moral questions. The topic of this thread is a case in point: everyone* agreeing that slavery is right still wouldn't make it so.
Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
What's there to discuss? You've defined morality as "standard of behavior as defined by society". If that's true, then the only thing to discuss is "what standard of behaviour has society defined for this particular circumstance?". Do an opinion poll, and you've got your answer to all moral questions.

If someone says "you know, all these slaves are people just like you and me, but they are surfing misery and toil. This doesn't seem good to me, I think it's wrong." The response need be only "Society has defined slavery as good, therefore it is." And if your definition of morality is valid, then that response is reasonable and there should be no further discussion.

Effectively, moral relativism boils down to eliminating the concept of a moral standard entirely, and replacing it with mere preference, preference of the individual and preference of the group, which rather than being fixed and immutably applicable to all equally, . But that's not the biggest problem with this argument.

There is an even bigger problem with this sort of relativist argument, an elephant in the room that no relativist ever seems to adequately address: How do you define what a "Society" is, and who gets to make that decision? That is the necessary first step to deciding what "Society" defines as "moral".

If you take "Society" to mean "mainstream white society in Germany and Austria circa 1937", and nothing outside that, then the Holocaust was a moral good, or at least morally neutral, since the majority of German "Society" at that time was profoundly anti-semitic, and had no problem with the Jews being purged from "Society". The Jewish part of "Society" was much smaller, and most Germans did not consider the Jews to be part of "Society"; so their idea of morality wasn't considered part of the "consensus".

Likewise, Confederate "Society" did not include anyone of African descent, or anyone of certain other ethnic or religious backgrounds, in their definition of "Society", so therefore their views of "morality" did not include any significant contradiction to the general consensus that Africans were not fully human, and therefore slavery was perfectly acceptable. Not even all fully accepted white people agreed with the "consensus", but they didn't count, for whatever reason. Perhaps they were the minority, perhaps the were the majority but the minority held more socio-political power.

And that's the issue that relativists never address. Who and What constitutes the "Society", and how many people in it are needed for a "consensus". It's a variation of the Texas Sharpshooter fallacy, you decide beforehand what morality you want to adopt, excuse, or justify; then adjust your definition of "Society" to achieve the "consensus" you desire.

The only other option is that the most powerful and persuasive people simply decide their preference is a "consensus"; and "morality" is defined by the mob, which can be manipulated by a sufficiently charismatic or powerful demagogue. You've effectively re-defined morality as "might makes right".
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Old 18th July 2017, 11:29 AM   #606
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Originally Posted by luchog View Post
So if the North had lost, and the South seceded, would slavery have thus been as unambiguously moral as it is now unambiguously immoral?








Effectively, moral relativism boils down to eliminating the concept of a moral standard entirely, and replacing it with mere preference, preference of the individual and preference of the group, which rather than being fixed and immutably applicable to all equally, . But that's not the biggest problem with this argument.

There is an even bigger problem with this sort of relativist argument, an elephant in the room that no relativist ever seems to adequately address: How do you define what a "Society" is, and who gets to make that decision? That is the necessary first step to deciding what "Society" defines as "moral".

If you take "Society" to mean "mainstream white society in Germany and Austria circa 1937", and nothing outside that, then the Holocaust was a moral good, or at least morally neutral, since the majority of German "Society" at that time was profoundly anti-semitic, and had no problem with the Jews being purged from "Society". The Jewish part of "Society" was much smaller, and most Germans did not consider the Jews to be part of "Society"; so their idea of morality wasn't considered part of the "consensus".

Likewise, Confederate "Society" did not include anyone of African descent, or anyone of certain other ethnic or religious backgrounds, in their definition of "Society", so therefore their views of "morality" did not include any significant contradiction to the general consensus that Africans were not fully human, and therefore slavery was perfectly acceptable. Not even all fully accepted white people agreed with the "consensus", but they didn't count, for whatever reason. Perhaps they were the minority, perhaps the were the majority but the minority held more socio-political power.

And that's the issue that relativists never address. Who and What constitutes the "Society", and how many people in it are needed for a "consensus". It's a variation of the Texas Sharpshooter fallacy, you decide beforehand what morality you want to adopt, excuse, or justify; then adjust your definition of "Society" to achieve the "consensus" you desire.

The only other option is that the most powerful and persuasive people simply decide their preference is a "consensus"; and "morality" is defined by the mob, which can be manipulated by a sufficiently charismatic or powerful demagogue. You've effectively re-defined morality as "might makes right".
How is any of that a problem? You simply make observations based around the structure of the group? If that group so happens to be a demagogue and the mob, then those are the observations you make.
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Old 18th July 2017, 11:41 AM   #607
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
And you're missing that the "moral" decision is the one that ultimately won!
It hasn't ultimately won. Social norms are incrementally moving towards the moral position.

Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Let's try a couple of more recent examples, where it's not as cut-and-dried, because we don't have the luxury of hindsight.
OH FOR THE LOVE OF ED

We get the moral relativism argument. We really, really do. There is no need for you to rehash it again. What you need to try and grok is that that argument is not always applicable. That is what several people here are trying to get across to you, while you repeat the same thing over and over.

In this particular case, moral relativism is only applicable in a very, very narrow context. So narrow to the point of being as indefensible as white supremacists are today.


Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Just because there is disagreement about a topic of morality at a point in time, doesn't mean that either side of that argument is objectively and unambiguously correct about it.
But what it does mean is that people of that time had a choice. As such, they are responsible for their choices and not unwitting cogs in some great social machine.


Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
***ETA: Acknowledging that different standards of morality exist in different times and in different cultures is not even remotely close to arguing that all of those views ought to be tolerated by OUR society in OUR time.
And what about in this particular case, in which a group attempts to whitewash history by recasting the Confederacy's true intentions in something more morally acceptable, even desirable, in their own time?
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Old 18th July 2017, 11:44 AM   #608
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post

And what about in this particular case, in which a group attempts to whitewash history by recasting the Confederacy's true intentions in something more morally acceptable, even desirable, in their own time?
What about it? What are you asking?
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:11 PM   #609
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
What about it? What are you asking?
I'm asking how moral relativism comes into play when this monument was erected 50ish years after the Civil War when there had been roughly 2 generations of people who knew a country without slavery.

I mean, clearly, the question of the morality of slavery was already decided from a relativistic POV. Otherwise, the Daughters of the Confederacy, among others, would not have been working a disinformation campaign to retroactively distance the Confederacy from it.

Should we excuse bad behavior because the people engaging in it really, really believe they are doing the right thing? If we're looking for analogies, take the anti-vaxxors of today. (please)
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:19 PM   #610
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
I'm asking how moral relativism comes into play when this monument was erected 50ish years after the Civil War when there had been roughly 2 generations of people who knew a country without slavery.

I mean, clearly, the question of the morality of slavery was already decided from a relativistic POV. Otherwise, the Daughters of the Confederacy, among others, would not have been working a disinformation campaign to retroactively distance the Confederacy from it.

Should we excuse bad behavior because the people engaging in it really, really believe they are doing the right thing? If we're looking for analogies, take the anti-vaxxors of today. (please)
I guess the relativism answer is it depends on what group you wish to be part of.
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:26 PM   #611
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
I guess the relativism answer is it depends on what group you wish to be part of.
You can defend a group without wishing to be a part of it. However, it then becomes difficult to claim you aren't defending them.
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:29 PM   #612
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
I don't intend to change my viewpoint, but I note you quoted me as saying.....

"
Originally Posted by bruto
All of this is garbage for one simple reason: Slavery was evil..."

Which I don't recall saying quite that way, and the linked post does not congtain that statement. After all that's gone on in this thread, can't guarantee what I did or didn't say, nor do I care to dig very deep but I think something got mixed up.
My apologies, bruto. The quote was mis-attributed - the pointer should have directed to a statement by Babbylonian. Sorry about that.

Originally Posted by bruto View Post
A small point in the end, I think. I still think monuments to the confederacy (as opposed, perhaps, to those that might be erected for local heroes) are inappropriate for public lands, not because we are judging individuals retroactively by today's standards, but because we are judging what is appropriate today by today's standards. We need not rewrite history, nor demonize those who were creatures of their time and place, but if we change what we believe or what we know, why should we not change what we honor, value, and put on public display?
It's local and regional history. If the monuments were clearly depicting slavery as acceptable, or in some fashion were clearly antagonistic, then I'd have no objection to removing it. But it's not. It's considered tarred by association - it's associated with the losing side of the Civil War, therefore... Slavery is bad!!!!! Even though the statue itself doesn't have anything to do with slavery.

Are we judging that commemorating the losing side in a Civil War is unacceptable? Are we judging that memorializing local history is unacceptable? What exactly does this statue depict that is considered unacceptable, so that it must be removed?
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:31 PM   #613
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I asked why you care about those things, not what they are. So again, why do you care about " current society's collective view of appropriate behavior for people today"?
Holy crap, seriously? That's hopw you're going to trim that quote? For what purpose? Do you think it tricks other people into tihnking that's all I said? Or is that as far as you made it and just tdidn't bother reading the rest before responding?

I answered your question. Try reading the whole post this time.
Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
I care about current society's collective view of appropriate behavior for people today. But I don't try to retroactively apply those mores on past peoples. I prefer to understand the perspective at the time, and understand why and how we changed our views. I also accept that my own views of morality are formed by what I was taught - both formally by school and parents, as well as informally through peers and media throughout my life.

I care because I find sweeping judgments of morality applied to several centuries ago to be both ridiculous and poor reasoning.
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:38 PM   #614
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
It's local and regional history.
No. It is not local history. St. Louis did not side with the Confederacy.


Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
If the monuments were clearly depicting slavery as acceptable, or in some fashion were clearly antagonistic, then I'd have no objection to removing it. But it's not. It's considered tarred by association - it's associated with the losing side of the Civil War, therefore... Slavery is bad!!!!! Even though the statue itself doesn't have anything to do with slavery.
Yes, it does. It was specifically erected to disassociate Confederacy with slavery. Your premise is factually incorrect and this has been pointed out to you several times now.


Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Are we judging that memorializing local history is unacceptable? What exactly does this statue depict that is considered unacceptable, so that it must be removed?
Again, this is not memorializing local history!
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:39 PM   #615
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
You didn't just acknowledge that it wasn't considered universally immoral at the time, you used that fact to argue that it wasn't wrong. That's a very different thing.
Please show me where I argued that slavery wasn't wrong. I've clearly stated a number of times that I view slavery as wrong. I've also said that slavery wasn't universally viewed as wrong at the time, and that retroactively assigning a moral judgment based on today's views is inappropriate. But at no point have I argued that slavery wasn't wrong.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
You even argued that northern states not sending escaped slaves back to their masters were participating in theft of property, and that this justified the secession.
Lol, I love the characterization. or maybe it's genuine misunderstanding. Is this too complex?

From the perspective of the Southern states, the failure to return stolen property is one of many reasons that the south had for their secession. The lack of enforcement of the laws regarding escaped slaves could reasonably be interpreted by the south as the federal government failing it's duty to uphold the law.

From the perspective of the Southern states, their secession was justified by a number of reasons. There were no laws against secession at the time it occurred. It wasn't deemed to be treason until after the fact.

None of that is a reflection of my views or opinions. It's a discussion of the perspective of the actors at the time. It is a discussion of the reasons that the South had for seceding, in contrast to the reasons that the North had for refusing to let them secede.
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:51 PM   #616
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Please show me where I argued that slavery wasn't wrong. I've clearly stated a number of times that I view slavery as wrong. I've also said that slavery wasn't universally viewed as wrong at the time,

Not universally, but widely. Even some slave owners prior to the civil war were troubled by the moral and ethical questions it raised.

And it is not universally viewed as wrong even today. There are a not-insignificant number of people today who consider that slavery was, at the time, a net moral good, and a smaller but still significantly non-zero number who still believe that black people are not fully human and would be happy to see the return of chattel slavery. There are places in the world where various forms of slavery are still practiced, clandestinely or openly.

So how widely spread does a belief need to be before it's considered a "universal" consensus, and therefore sufficiently agreed upon to become the moral standard?

Quote:
and that retroactively assigning a moral judgment based on today's views is inappropriate. But at no point have I argued that slavery wasn't wrong.

So, do you believe that it's inappropriate for those of us living today to assign a moral judgement to the Holocaust?

Quote:
From the perspective of the Southern states, the failure to return stolen property is one of many reasons that the south had for their secession.

Please provide evidence of those other reasons and their relative importance compared to their clearly enumerated goal of perpetuating the institution of chattel slavery and the supremacy of the white race.

Quote:
The lack of enforcement of the laws regarding escaped slaves could reasonably be interpreted by the south as the federal government failing it's duty to uphold the law.

So much for your assertions of "States' Rights" being the primary motivation.
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:52 PM   #617
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
Let's bring this moral relativism back to the topic.

The Confederate memorial was erected in the mid-1910s in St. Louis. This was 50ish years after the Civil War, 30ish years after Reconstruction, and another 40ish years until the Civil Rights Movement. Further, it was erected in an area that was solidly on the Union side of the war.

So, right off the top, we can falsify the notion that the monument was, in any way, memorializing local heroes of the Confederacy. There were few, if any, from that area.

Next, if we're going to use the moral context of the time, it is not the times of Civil War. It is the moral context of the early 1910s, roughly the midway point of the Jim Crow era. As pointed out numerous times, this memorial was part of the Lost Cause movement to disassociate the Confederacy from slavery, in this case by the Daughters Of The Confederacy. So, Emily's Cat, how are we to judge this monument within the moral standards of that context?


Where does it end? Should we not pass moral judgement on segregationists because they products of their times? Should we not pass moral judgement on white supremacists today because they are product of their times?

Should we never look at the broader context?
Let's look at the broader context then.

All statues, memorials, and celebrations of Columbus really ought to go. He was a horrible person and by all accounts pretty much launched a systematic attack on the First Nations that has gone on for hundreds of years.

Probably need to go ahead and remove any statues commemorating the US Revolutionary war as well. We were definitely treasonous traitors, and it totally wasn't about freedom - it was all about money. Might need to take down the liberty bell. That thing was barely a thing during the war, it wasn't adopted as a symbol until much, much later.

Definitely need to get rid of any monuments depicting Paul Revere. Talk about bigoted. I guess 'Israel Bissell' is still just to Jewish to be palatable?
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:54 PM   #618
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
What's there to discuss? You've defined morality as "standard of behavior as defined by society". If that's true, then the only thing to discuss is "what standard of behaviour has society defined for this particular circumstance?". Do an opinion poll, and you've got your answer to all moral questions.

If someone says "you know, all these slaves are people just like you and me, but they are surfing misery and toil. This doesn't seem good to me, I think it's wrong." The response need be only "Society has defined slavery as good, therefore it is." And if your definition of morality is valid, then that response is reasonable and there should be no further discussion.
Do you even read the posts you're quoting?
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Old 18th July 2017, 12:59 PM   #619
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Do you even read the posts you're quoting?
Do you? Your evasions are truly breathtaking. You continually repeat factually incorrect points. You have yet to acknowledge the actual history involved with this monument.
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Old 18th July 2017, 01:01 PM   #620
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Originally Posted by luchog View Post
So if the North had lost, and the South seceded, would slavery have thus been as unambiguously moral as it is now unambiguously immoral?
In my opinion no. There was sufficient argument against it from many different angles. The northern abolitionists wouldn't have changed their minds any time soon. I think that sip was launching, even if it hadn't yet sailed. The timing would have been different, there would have been no reconstruction to sow even more of a schism.

Originally Posted by luchog View Post
Effectively, moral relativism boils down to eliminating the concept of a moral standard entirely, and replacing it with mere preference, preference of the individual and preference of the group, which rather than being fixed and immutably applicable to all equally, . But that's not the biggest problem with this argument.
Each person thinks that their moral standard is the right moral standard. Morality is NOT immutable and applicable to all equally. End of story. It simply isn't.

Ethics can be applied equally to all. Morality can not.

Originally Posted by luchog View Post
There is an even bigger problem with this sort of relativist argument, an elephant in the room that no relativist ever seems to adequately address: How do you define what a "Society" is, and who gets to make that decision?
It's not an elephant in the room, luchog. It's an inherent uncertainty in everything human. Which society are you part of? Are you part of the American society? Or part of the Washingtonian society? How about the Pacific Northwest society? The Equal Rights for Trans-gendered People society? The Seattle is Awesome society? All of the above. none of the above?

We are each part of many societies, and society is a moving target.
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Old 18th July 2017, 01:22 PM   #621
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Let's look at the broader context then.

All statues, memorials, and celebrations of Columbus really ought to go.
That's not the broader context. That's off topic.

We can talk about it, if you like. Start a new thread.
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Old 18th July 2017, 01:33 PM   #622
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Let's look at the broader context then.
Translation: warning, rhetorical false-equivalencies follow.

Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
All statues, memorials, and celebrations of Columbus really ought to go. He was a horrible person and by all accounts pretty much launched a systematic attack on the First Nations that has gone on for hundreds of years.
I'm actually completely okay with this and would like to receive your newsletter.

Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Probably need to go ahead and remove any statues commemorating the US Revolutionary war as well. We were definitely treasonous traitors, and it totally wasn't about freedom - it was all about money. Might need to take down the liberty bell. That thing was barely a thing during the war, it wasn't adopted as a symbol until much, much later.
This is a little different. A war for self-government based on economic interest sounds a lot less glorious than if you left that last part out to be sure, but it's a far cry from going to war because you're afraid Black Lincoln is coming to take away your human property.

Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Definitely need to get rid of any monuments depicting Paul Revere. Talk about bigoted. I guess 'Israel Bissell' is still just to Jewish to be palatable?
I'm only aware of one Paul Revere monument, in Boston; but if you want to get rid of it, you'd hear no lamentation from me.
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Old 18th July 2017, 02:31 PM   #623
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
In my opinion no.

Why not? In Confederate society it was a clear moral good.

Quote:
There was sufficient argument against it from many different angles. The northern abolitionists wouldn't have changed their minds any time soon.

Why is that even relevant? If the Confederacy had successfully seceded, they wouldn't have been a part of


Quote:
I think that sip was launching, even if it hadn't yet sailed. The timing would have been different, there would have been no reconstruction to sow even more of a schism.

Again, irrelevant. They'd already torpedoed that ship for their society. It was enshrined in their highest law that slavery and white supremacy were moral goods.

Quote:
Ethics can be applied equally to all. Morality can not.

Nope, that's a double standard. Either there's a clear standard which can be applied to all; or there isn't, and everything is just personal/group preference. Ethics as well as morals. If you can claim that ethics are universal, then you've just made the exact same claim as those that say that morals are universal, all you're doing is quibbling about terminology. More BS semantic games.

Ethics are simply morals applied to specific scenarios, to use the standard English definition.

From the Oxford Dictionary of the English Language:
Quote:
ethics
PLURAL NOUN
1 usually treated as plural
Moral principles that govern a person's behaviour or the conducting of an activity.
Ďmedical ethics also enter into the questioní
Ďa code of ethicsí
More example sentencesSynonyms
1.1 The moral correctness of specified conduct.
Ďmany scientists question the ethics of cruel experimentsí
More example sentences
2 usually treated as singular
The branch of knowledge that deals with moral principles.
Ďneither metaphysics nor ethics is the home of religioní

If one is ambiguous and inconstant, so is the other, by definition. Again, you're just engaging in more semantic BS to evade having to answer the question, and address the clear and obvious elephant in the room.

Quote:
Which society are you part of? Are you part of the American society? Or part of the Washingtonian society? How about the Pacific Northwest society? The Equal Rights for Trans-gendered People society? The Seattle is Awesome society? All of the above. none of the above?

I just asked you that, why are you repeating my question as if you're the one who thought of it?

Quote:
We are each part of many societies, and society is a moving target.

So you've just clearly invalidated your claim that morality is based on social consensus, by invalidating even the idea that there is a coherent society that there can be a consensus in. If you can't even define a "society", then you can't define "morals" or "ethics", and all you're left with is that morals/ethics are the preferences of whoever can punch the hardest. If the South had won, then slavery would be moral, and abolitionism immoral, white people would be the pinnacle of civilization, and black people sub-human animals, by your definition.

In order to retain any shred of validity, relativism has to depend on a consistent, clear context. You've just thrown that entirely out of the window by claiming that there is no consistent context anywhere. Might makes right.
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Old 18th July 2017, 04:52 PM   #624
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Originally Posted by Emily's Cat View Post
Holy crap, seriously? That's hopw you're going to trim that quote? For what purpose? Do you think it tricks other people into tihnking that's all I said? Or is that as far as you made it and just tdidn't bother reading the rest before responding?
Yes, because I didn't think the part that you highlighted applied to the question, but I guess I was wrong and you think it does.

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I answered your question. Try reading the whole post this time.
I read the whole post. How do you think:
Quote:
I care because I find sweeping judgments of morality applied to several centuries ago to be both ridiculous and poor reasoning.
Answers the question of "why do you care about what society thinks?"

You really think that's an answer to that question? It seems like a complete non-sequitur to me.

Q:Why do you care what society thinks?
A: Because I find sweeping judgments of morality applied to several centuries ago to be both ridiculous and poor reasoning.



Maybe I can try again. You are making the argument that morality is defined by society. My question is why, under that definition, you think morality has any meaning. Why not go against the views of society? Why do you care about being moral when morality is defined in that way?
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Old 18th July 2017, 07:06 PM   #625
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
OH FOR THE LOVE OF ED

We get the moral relativism argument. We really, really do. There is no need for you to rehash it again.
This is why I described moral relativism as an argument one makes when one wants to shutdown an argument, not argue a point or make a statement.

Whenever the moral relativism gets brought up in an argument it is always in this context, where it is dropped into the discussion and the rest of the discussion is trying to explain to the person that dropped it in that the conversation is not now magically over.

It's not an argument it's a thought terminating cliche, it's a wannabe mic drop.

"Moral relativism" isn't a thing. It's not a valid concept and saying that doesn't mean I mean that morality is a rigid unbreakable code handed down from up on high.

"You can't discuss, debate, argue, attack, defend, support, or oppose the treatment of humans by other humans outside of the specific time and place of those actions." isn't an opinion that human beings actually hold.

If a... Mesopotamian built a bridge in 2724 B.C and that bridge fell down drowning a dozen people and 3 heads of cattle... I can say now speaking as person in 2017 America that it was a bad bridge. It doesn't mean I think that someone in an entirely different culture in an entirely different millennium should have built a modern steel and prestressed concrete cantilever bridge or that all bridges have to be built the exact same way or it is wrong.
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Old 19th July 2017, 06:17 AM   #626
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Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
"Moral relativism" isn't a thing.
It is a thing. It has it's place. It applies to neither the Confederacy nor the later Daughters of the Confederacy, for reasons that have already been pointed out and largely ignored.
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Old 19th July 2017, 06:43 AM   #627
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
It is a thing. It has it's place. It applies to neither the Confederacy nor the later Daughters of the Confederacy, for reasons that have already been pointed out and largely ignored.
Descriptive moral relativism still applies. So does metaethical (I think)
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Old 19th July 2017, 06:51 AM   #628
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Descriptive moral relativism still applies. So does metaethical (I think)
Well, in the same way it applies to white nationalism or anti-vaxxers
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Old 19th July 2017, 07:02 AM   #629
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
Well, in the same way it applies to white nationalism or anti-vaxxers
Exactly.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:08 AM   #630
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Aside from the paradox of a moral relativism argument that seems to imply that although we cannot judge our forebears we must endure their now-obsolete morality forever in the form of public monuments, I find it worth repeating here that the monument in question is NOT a memorial to fallen local heroes, nor is it to be destroyed or even hidden. It is a public monument to the Confederacy as a whole, erected after the war by Confederate apologists, in a border State that was bloodied by division, and even now feels the sting of its history of racial inequality. Officially, Missouri remained in the Union. If you wanted, you might say that the rebels in Missouri were doubly traitorous, rebelling not only against the union but against their own state. The argument of "states' rights" certainly gets no traction here.

The monument now belongs to a museum, where it can be freely exhibited as a museum artifact, as it ought to be, and where the population of the city, some still reeling from the effects of continuing racial unrest, inequality and brutality, and some trying their very best to do the right thing and overcome those burdens, need not see it if they do not want to. Good.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:10 AM   #631
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
Well, in the same way it applies to white nationalism or anti-vaxxers
Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Exactly.
...which is to say it only applies very narrowly and not in any useful or realistic way to the discussion. It is essentially "they believe in what they say", which is roughly equivalent to the definition of blind faith.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:13 AM   #632
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Originally Posted by bruto View Post
The monument now belongs to a museum, where it can be freely exhibited as a museum artifact, as it ought to be, and where the population of the city, some still reeling from the effects of continuing racial unrest, inequality and brutality, and some trying their very best to do the right thing and overcome those burdens, need not see it if they do not want to. Good.
Fair, but also ouch.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:17 AM   #633
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Honestly, the entire Civil War was pointless. The industrial revolution would have eventually ended slavery. The entire war resulted over money because that top 1% of planters that owned the huge plantations wanted to preserve their life style. Instead of trying to work out an agreement to transition away from slavery the confederates decided to wage war.

Seven million people died in that war on both sides simply because no one wanted to be rational, it accomplished absolutely nothing. I don't understand the desire to celebrate "war heroes" that represented defenders of an archaic slave based economy that was inevitably a lost cause at the expense of insulting the present day AA community. It's history, but is it worth honoring that history?
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:43 AM   #634
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post
...which is to say it only applies very narrowly and not in any useful or realistic way to the discussion. It is essentially "they believe in what they say", which is roughly equivalent to the definition of blind faith.
Are we actors in this world or merely scientists making observations? I would say the latter.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:47 AM   #635
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Originally Posted by Jodie View Post
I don't understand the desire to celebrate "war heroes" that represented defenders of an archaic slave based economy that was inevitably a lost cause at the expense of insulting the present day AA community. It's history, but is it worth honoring that history?
Again, this particular monument was not designed to honor history. It was designed to re-write it, to promote the false narrative that the Confederacy was based on noble ideas that had little or nothing to do with slavery.

But, to answer your question, no. St. Louis decided that not only was the narrative not worth honoring, but also that the history of that false narrative different context. Personally, I think putting it in a museum as an artifact of the postbellum era where Southerners worked to rationalize and redeem the roles of their ancestors in US history.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:49 AM   #636
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Are we actors in this world or merely scientists making observations? I would say the latter.


...what "we" are you referring to and why "or"?
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:51 AM   #637
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Originally Posted by Upchurch View Post


...what "we" are you referring to and why "or"?
""We" the people on this thread

"Or" one cannot be a mere observer and an actor at the same time.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:56 AM   #638
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
""We" the people on this thread

"Or" one cannot be a mere observer and an actor at the same time.
Observation is an act.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:57 AM   #639
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
""We" the people on this thread

"Or" one cannot be a mere observer and an actor at the same time.
I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about or how it relates to anything going on in this thread.

Also, scientists can make observations and be actors in the world. There is nothing "mere" about it.
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Old 19th July 2017, 08:58 AM   #640
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Originally Posted by Spindrift View Post
Observation is an act.
Simply engaging in some verb does not make someone in actor. A biologist observing an ant hill is not an actor like the ants are.
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