Relativism and Morality

In: Social Issues

Submitted By mallett86
Words 763
Pages 4
Relativism and Morality

SOC120: Introduction to Ethics & Social Responsibility

March 12, 2012

I have many thoughts on the subjects discussed by Lenn Goodman in his article. Determining whether Goodman is right or wrong is simply a matter of opinion, it is the perception of the person or people who believe in these ways. It is my strong belief that what Goodman is stating in his article is right. “Granted, any norm, to be effectual, must be embedded in the thick of life.”(Goodman, 2010)
Discussing the different areas in which Goodman talks about in his article the first is Genocide, Famine, and Germ Warfare. “All living beings make claims to life.” (Goodman, 2010) Goodman tries to compare murder and warfare in this article. I can agree with him on the fact that murder is wrong, but at the same time there must be some type of line drawn to determine whether this act is committed on behalf of wants, needs, or desire. There are many different facets of murder, all having the same end state of death. Some commit this act of violence on the cause of jealousy or envy which speaks on that individual’s character. Sometimes murder may be committed in acts of self-defense, in these cases I would say that this violent act would possibly be excusable due to the constraints of the situation (either he dies or I die). In this term it is a matter of survival going to the mere basics of humanity. Within the confines of murder comes genocide.
Genocide unlike murder is purposely geared toward a specific type of human, whether it is based on sex, race, religion, or whatever the acting party is aiming for. In my opinion this is a far worse act than murder, because it targets the whole of the group in the specifics to wipe them out. “Genocide targets individuals as members of a group, seeking to destroy a race, a culture, a linguistic or ethnic identity,…...

Similar Documents

Morality

...What is Morality Introduction to Philosophy American Intercontinental University David C. Koopmans September 23, 2012 Abstract This paper discusses whether infanticide is universally morally wrong, or morally right withing certain contexts. The focus of the paper is going to be that infanticide is universally morally wrong. Infanticide is the practice of killing a newborn baby that is practiced in many other cultures, but is deemed illegal in the United States. The question is, is this practice universally morally wrong, or is it morally right within certain contexts. Cultures exist that make having multiple children an extreme financial burden, or due to population control, illegal to have more than one child. Even within these contexts, does it make it morally right to practice infanticide? No, it does not! The practice of infanticide is universally morally wrong. Infanticide is practiced in several cultures, one of which is Pakistan. According to cultural relativism, this practice is deemed morally right. Cultural relativism deals with actions that are specific to a culture and the individuals within a specific culture. The beliefs and customs of a particular culture are relative to the individuals within that culture. What may be morally right in one culture may not be right in another (gotquestions.org, 2011). Relativism deals with the fact that individual societies may deem, for themselves, what is right or wrong. Since truth...

Words: 1527 - Pages: 7

Relativism and Morality

...Relativism and Morality In this article, “Some Moral Minima” by Lenn E. Goodman, he expresses his views about situations that he feels that are wrong. He explains and argues the wrong in murder, terrorism, hostages, slavery, rape, polygamy, and incest. He provides detailed examples of why he believes these things are wrong. I agree with him on these issues that are proven to be wrong morally. I do not believe that any one should take advantage of another person in any way i.e. discriminating or taking their life because it is unmoral in my opinion. One of the main points that the author wrote about was murder. Murder is a wrong and unmoral act and I do not feel any individual should have the right to end someone’s life for no reason at all or even if there is a reason. Who has the right to take a life? Goodman states “Murder is wrong because it destroys a human subject”. (pg.88 par.9) In Genesis 9:6 the Bible states “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed” and the only time I feel someone should be killed is if they are in the process of harming another individual’s life or if they have taken someone’s life. For example, if a person is in danger it should be a giving right for them to defend themselves and if someone kills another person they should be persecuted and put to death. In his article one of the types of murders he talked about was genocide. Genocide is type of murder that targets individuals as members of a group, seeking to......

Words: 921 - Pages: 4

Relativism and Morality

...Based on different sociology dissertations, morality has been an issue that many societies globally have been trying to deal with. This term is used to describe the code of acceptable behaviors in a given society or culture. On the other hand, moral minima is a word that goes along with morality. This sets a standard by which the people in the society have to follow so that they may be living within the limits of proper moral conduct. The advent of civilization has given room to various forms that come from moral minima. As such, morality has become an issue that is interpreted in different ways depending how one looks or evaluates it (Goodman, 2010, p.87). Therefore, this has given rise to at least three areas where morality is supposedly received or obtained. Firstly, morality can be considered relative to the laws of a given nation so that what the law says is right. Second, morality can be said to have also come from religion where the various religions have their own holy books by which members are told to behave in a certain way. Finally, it is the personal source of morality. This is what has sparked a lot of controversy in many subject to millions of interpretation and understandings. Consequently, this is what I believe started influential philosophers like Lenn Goodman into argument that there are some things, which are certainly wrong. In this regard, this study seeks to explore the credits or challenges Goodman presents in his assertions (Goodman, 2010,......

Words: 805 - Pages: 4

Relativism and Morality

...Relativism and Morality Donna Hare Ashford University Introduction to Ethics & Social Responsibility SOC 120 Vahik Ovanessian November 25, 2012 Relativism and Morality In Lenn E. Goodman’s article “Some Moral Minima,” he argues that there are some things that are just wrong. I will discuss some of the issues discussed and give my opinion as to whether I agree or disagree with his opinions. Relativism in itself is whether an action is right or wrong that depends on the moral norms of the society in which it is practiced. What may be morally right in one culture can be viewed as morally wrong in another. In saying this, I do not believe that it will ever be possible to accomplish moral standards equally universally to apply to all people at all times. Different societies with their differences on moralism make it impossible to resolve moral disputes or to reach an agreement on ethical matters. The moral standards that each society practices really can only be judged by their own society. The areas that Lenn Goodman discussed is genocide, politically induced famine (depravation), germ warfare, terrorism, hostage taking, child warrior, polygamy, incest, slavery, rape, and female genital cutting. Lenn Goodman first discusses “Genocide, Famine, and Germ Warfare.” I agree with the statement that because murder destroys a human subject, it is wrong. I believe all societies know murder is wrong in of itself generally speaking. On the other hand, I......

Words: 2824 - Pages: 12

Relativism and Morality

...Relativism and Morality Week 2 Assignment: Relativism and Morality Jody Herrig SOC 120: Introduction to Ethics & Social Responsibility Prof. Linda Atkinson Monday, February 25, 2013  Relativism and Morality     Relativism is a concept that forges reality advancing assumptions which declare nothing to be absolutely true or valid. This is so because what has been proven true or valid is always based on personal perceptions which may be influenced by various predisposing factors. Often they may be merely subjective sentiments which are not universal since they only represent the view point of a few, the minority, majority or imposition of a dictator (Baghramian, 2004).       When conceptualized within the context of morality it impinges on the framework that truth is applicable only as it pertains to specific guidelines and adaptations. Hence, if morality then becomes as issue in determining truth; it is sieving intentions to decipher purity and whether they are based on justice or outcomes that are beneficial to all.       Therefore, this section of my presentation will focus on Lenn Goodman’s (2010) ‘Some Moral Minima:’ A Perspective. Also, a discussion on whether the conceptual framework advanced by this author challenges relativism will be embraced as well as a personal analysis of the themes. Lenn Goodman- ‘Some Moral Minima:’ A Perspective       Lenn Goodman (2010) as any social scientist has to justify the morals of society. To say......

Words: 269 - Pages: 2

Real Relativism and Morality

...Real Relativism and Morality Jeff MacDougall SOC 120 Instructor Tirizia Lorene York February 25, 2013 Everything that Lenn Goodman argues makes a great point. Lenn Goodman sees the morality and lack of morality in the lives of different cultures, which is what makes this world a good and a bad place. Away for the sake of gaining respect or wealth, Goodman basically discusses that every person whether it be man, woman, or child has the rights to live and be free from any and all inhumane treatment. Relativism is the idea that one’s beliefs and values are understood of one’s society culture or even one’s own individual values (Mosser, 2010). With that being said everyday a person from a culture conducts some kind of moral choice. The moral choice that he or she chooses may be viewed as right or wrong by other cultures. In this paper “some moral minima” by Lenn E. Goodman there are views of different aspects of morality and relativism and Goodman argues that certain things are just wrong. Goodman discusses issues on subjects such as slavery, genocide, terrorism, murder, rape, polygamy, and incest. I agree with Goodman on these issues because these is never a good time to kill for the sake of killing, rape for the sake of sex, or take ones rights away for the sake of gaining respect or wealth. Goodman basically discusses that every person whether it be man, woman, or child has the rights to live and be free from any and all inhumane treatment. Goodman’s main......

Words: 1044 - Pages: 5

Relativism and Morality

...Based on different sociology dissertations, morality has been an issue that many societies globally have been trying to contend. This term is used to describe the code of acceptable behaviors in a given context or society. On the other hand, moral minima is a word that goes hand in hand with morality. This essentially sets a standard or rather a principle by which the members of a society have to adhere to so that they may be considered to be operating within the limits of proper moral conduct. The advent of civilization has given room to various forms that moral minima can be derived. As such, morality has become an issue that is interpreted in different ways depending on the angle at which one looks or evaluates it (Goodman, 2010, p.87). Therefore, this has given rise to at least three areas where morality is supposedly received or obtained. Firstly, morality can be considered relative to the laws of a given nation so that what the law stipulates as right then is morally upright. Secondly, morality can be said to have also been derived from religion where the various religious affiliations have their own holy books by which members are beseeched to behave in a certain manner. Finally, it is the personal source of morality. This is what has sparked a lot of controversy as is subject to millions of interpretation and understandings. Consequently, this is what I believe triggered influential philosophers like Lenn Goodman to spirited argument that there are some things, which...

Words: 902 - Pages: 4

Relativism and Morality

...RUNNING HEAD: RELATIVISM AND MORALITY Relativism and Morality Kaleen Cheney SOC/120 Russell Tompkins February 2, 2013 RUNNING HEAD: RELATIVISM AND MORALITY PAGE 1 In reading the Lenn Goodman Some Moral Minima, I have to agree that certain things are simply wrong. The issues such as genocide, famine, germ warfare, terrorism, hostages, child warriors, slavery, polygamy, and incest are all topics that Goodman discusses that I have to agree that I have the same point of view as. I agree with Goodman because he says that “culture or character do not matter much morally”, but “personal and cultural difference do set a tone”. Relativism is the belief that nothing is ‘wrong’, that each culture has the right to choose their definitions of what is right or wrong. Morals are personal taught behaviors of right and wrong actions and or behaviors. No matter what religion, race, or culture you are from, some things are just simply wrong. Goodman is very good at describing that every person whether it be a man, woman, or child has the rights to live and be free from any and all inhumane treatment. Terrorism, Hostages, and Child Warriors are the first of Goodman’s topics. We hear every day about terrorism and hostages but for me child warriors are a topic that I have kind of forgotten about. Child warriors are something that I personally think is a topic that does not fit with the Moral Minima in my opinion. We agree that certain things are just simply wrong but in...

Words: 1001 - Pages: 5

Relativism and Morality

...RELATIVISM AND MORALITY Week 2 Assignment Sarah Knight SOC120: Introduction to Ethics and Social Responsibility Prof. Thomas Reeder November 4, 2013 Relativism and Morality Moral choices are conducted on a daily basis, by every culture, which can be viewed on an ethical scale of right or wrong, by other cultures. In her writing of “Some Moral Minima”, Lenn E. Goodman views several aspects of morality and relativism, and argues that certain things are just wrong. In presenting my own morals, I agree with this statement; however, pondering the image, that only one accurate ethic exists and that we may be able to find universal moral requirements and arrive at a multiethnic agreement on issues presented by Goodman is a parable. In this paper, I will state my opinion on challenges Goodman presents to relativism. I will also provide my thoughts on if there are such universal moral requirements. In Goodman’s initial area of discussion of “Some Moral Minima; Genocide, Famine, and Germ Warfare (Goodman, L.E., 2010)”, she states “Genocide targets individuals as members of a group, seeking to destroy a race, a culture, a linguistic or ethnic identity (Goodman, L.E., 2010)”. I reflect back to after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were made on The United States. The threat of germ warfare became a very real aspect of war for our nation. Governmental groups, that we were at war against, were considering the decision to use this type of weapon in order to defeat......

Words: 1212 - Pages: 5

Relativism and Morality

...Relativism and Morality: The Truth of Universal Morality SOC 120 Monica Jones August 13, 2012 Relativism and Morality: The Truth of Universal Morality Lenn Goodman explains in Some Moral Minima that there are many norms in terms of morals. Such subjects that Goodman mentions is slavery, polygamy, rape, incest, clitoridectomy, terrorism, hostages, child warriors, genocide, famine, and germ warfare. These topics send a shiver down the spine of most people. There is a deep moral understanding of right and wrong when it comes to such things as Goodman mentions. These topics expand past any country or culture boundaries. This is a matter of being human and understanding what penetrates the core of our humanity. Things such as slavery, hostages, and forced famine are all things that strike at the very heart of humanity. Humanity is the basic connection between all races, cultures, and connects our overall existence as a whole. Once our humanity is chipped away at by another we can see where the wrong doing lays. The preservation of life and the freedom to live life is what is most wrong to take away. Essentially a moral norm is things that our universal human morality should prevent that rob others of life, dignity, survival, and one’s own will. The targeting of one culture for mass murder is universally wrong for robs others of life for something completely out of their control. Genocide is a destruction of a race or culture past, present, and future generations. Morally,......

Words: 1129 - Pages: 5

Relativism

...Relativism was the subject of Module 4. Relativism understands ethics in terms of situations and options. What is “right” and ”wrong” in any situation is variable. “Right” is a matter of the person’s personal preference, bias, emotion, experience, culture, gender, age, socioeconomic group, and any other factor the individual deems important. In essence, the individual is his/her own higher power. Entitlement-based ethics or egoism is a special type of relativism. Deontology, the study of duty, which we explored in Modules 3 and 5, describes a variety of positions that understand ethics in terms of duty or obedience to universal principles regardless of the consequences. These universal principles could come from God, from human origins and nature, or from human reason. Instead of asking whether an action will result in a particular type of consequence, either good or bad, as is the case with utilitarianism and social contract, deontologists ask whether an action is consistent with a particular principle or rule. In Module 5, we studied the ethical deontological categorical imperative of Immanuel Kant. Kant does not believe the authority for duty-driven activity is God. Kant believes that human will is the highest authority. He believes this “highest authority" emanates from the use of human reason. In short, Perhaps Kant’s “duty” is not as absolute as one might suppose. Human ordained moral action is often subject to change according to personal preference.  For Kant, the...

Words: 391 - Pages: 2

Ethical Relativism

...systematic study of the fundamental principles of morality. It is an attempt to explain moral principles. It is concerned with the question of right or wrong in human behavior. It explains how men ought to behave and why it is wrong or right to behave in a certain way. Ethics weighs human actions or inactions on a moral scale to determine whether the action is morally good or morally bad. Thomas Hobbes on ethics explained it as the science of “virtue and vice.”1 Morality and ethics cannot be divorced. Morality is the basis of ethics, the latter is the explicit reflection on, and the systematic study of the former (Joseph Omoregbe 1993 p.3)2. How then do we decide what is morally right? Is it based on universal laws or divine instructions? Are laws truly universal? If they are not, how then can the rightness or wrongness of culturally divergent societies be determined? Philosophers agree and disagree in varied proportions on answers to these questions. It is normal if you disagree too. For the purpose of this paper, an attempt will be made to look into the concept of ethical relativism, its importance and areas of deviation from ethical absolutism. History of Ethical Relativism Though moral relativism did not become a prominent topic in philosophy or elsewhere until the twentieth century, it has ancient origins. In the classical Greek world, both the historian Herodotus and the sophist Protagoras appeared to endorse some form of relativism. The early Sophist Greek......

Words: 3962 - Pages: 16

Relativism

...Thought-Piece 2 Relativism, Cultural and Moral People in different cultures, as well as people within a given culture, hold different moral views on particular issues. Some members of our society believe that abortion is immoral, and others believe that it is morally permissible. Thus, it is very important that we distinguish what is often called cultural and moral relativism. Differing views regarding the morality of a given action or practice may be the result of a number of factors. Two societies may basically and ultimately disagree on moral principles, but the disagreement may also be on many other levels. For instance, two societies may adhere to a basic principle: What helps the society flourish is moral and what hinders it is immoral. Differing conditions therefore provide a reason for holding different actions to be moral or immoral. A society’s factual beliefs also affect what it holds to be moral or immoral. Some societies believe what is false. To some extent, this is probably true of all societies. However, most societies are aware that they obtain more and more factual knowledge as they develop and progress in life. Just as a society may be mistaken about the proofs, so it may be mistaken about some of its moral judgements. The saying “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” has limited applicability. One clearly should observe local etiquette and other such customs in countries other than one’s own. So, when in Rome, one should indeed do as the......

Words: 448 - Pages: 2

Relativism and Morality

...Week 2 Assignment: Relativism and Morality Kendra Jones SOC 120: Introduction to Ethics & Social Responsibility Prof. Donna Falloon Monday, January 16th, 2012 Introduction Relativism is a concept that forges reality advancing assumptions which declare nothing to be absolutely true or valid. This is so because what has been proven true or valid is always based on personal perceptions which may be influenced by various predisposing factors. Often they may be merely subjective sentiments which are not universal since they only represent the view point of a few, the minority, majority or imposition of a dictator (Baghramian, 2004). When conceptualized within the context of morality it impinges on the framework that truth is applicable only as it pertains to specific guidelines and adaptations. Hence, if morality then becomes as issue in determining truth; it is sieving intentions to decipher purity and whether they are based on justice or outcomes that are beneficial to all. Therefore, this section of my presentation will focus on Lenn Goodman’s (2010) ‘Some Moral Minima:’ A Perspective. Also, a discussion on whether the conceptual framework advanced by this author challenges relativism will be embraced as well as a personal analysis of the themes. Lenn Goodman- ‘Some Moral Minima:’ A Perspective Lenn Goodman (2010) as any social scientist has to justify the morals of society. To say otherwise is to be...

Words: 860 - Pages: 4

Relativism and Morality

...Relativism and Morality 9/12/2012 SOC/120 The study of ethics can shed new light on old motifs in society. In "Some Moral Minima," Lenn Goodman offers discourse on several areas, each with multiple sub-topics. While some are subject matter for the nightly news, others are generally discussed with a hushed tone in American society. I find Mr. Goodman's paper to be well-written and, in general, quite in line with my perspective on these subjects. Additionally, he offers information as a means to create discussion, rather than judgment. At the top of Mr. Goodman's list are the topics of genocide, famine, and germ warfare, and their intentional application on various peoples. Genocide seeks "to destroy a race, culture, a linguistic or ethnic identity, even a class," (Goodman, L., 2010, pg. 2) operating successfully through fear, intimidation, and violence. The Armenian Genocide, in which many of my ancestors perished, is a perfect example of attempting to destroy an ethnic identity. Through the employment of "deportation, expropriation, torture, massacre, and starvation," the Turkish government attempted genocide upon the entire Armenian population between the years of 1915 and 1923. This all occurred thirty-three years prior to the adoption of the UN Genocide Convention, but still received worldwide condemnation as a "crime against humanity" (http://www.armenian-genocide.org/genocidefaq.html), Leaders seeking to wipe out an entire population as a means of control is not......

Words: 1100 - Pages: 5

Mirage of Blaze | Quick View | The Kissing Booth (2018)