Sunday, July 22, 2007
Many moral absolutists figure ethical relativism means accepting whatever anyone decides they want to do. That isn't the case. Moral relativism means acknowledging that what is and isn't moral changes with one's point of view. That means each of us has to accept responsibility for the moral code we practice, and for deciding where the boundaries have to be in the societies we live in.
It's more complicated than moral absolutism. But then, relativity makes physics more complicated, too. That isn't a reason to discount it.
The problem, of course, is that you don't have any principles to argue from except your taste. As the article says, "each of us has to accept responsibility for the moral code we practice, and for deciding where the boundaries have to be". What this ends up being is the stronger party imposes its vision of morality on the weaker party. How else could you come to a social morality? So while the Church is accused of imposing its absolutist views on others, I think that in fact it's relativism that can't help but to be little more than an imposition of irrational taste by one party on another.
Just my 2 cents.