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Evidence for Subjective Morality?

MyDinosaurHands
Posts: 203
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6/19/2014 8:10:23 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
While going on a Law and Order: SVU binge, I watched an episode where a man was going around and getting tons of women pregnant and leaving them and their children in ruins emotionally. Eventually the man was arrested so he couldn't do this anymore.

This made me beg the question, would the children prefer to have never been born at all? Sure, they might not be happy about what their dad did, but does that mean they don't want to live anymore? In most instances, I think we can reach the conclusion of no, they wouldn't prefer having never been born.

But doesn't this man's arrest essentially guarantee that for future potential people? By arresting this man, the officers of the SVU are preventing lives from becoming. Is this wrong? Some would argue that it is, especially if you refer to the logic in the previous paragraph. If we know that after the fact these kids prefer life without a responsible dad to no life at all, that would indicate that future potential people would want the same as well.

I have often used this 'prevention' idea to argue against abortion. But the response that I always get is that saying that abortion as prevention being wrong is like not banging someone every minute as prevention is wrong, a concept most accept as ridiculous.

We can see this prevention idea making itself known at different stages in the 'becoming a life' process'. It could be not banging someone every minute, it could be wearing a condom, it could be getting an abortion, all these things prevent a life from occurring.

That established, how does this become a topic geared toward subjective morality?

Well I get to thinking that this could become a topic of subjective morality because of the different ends of the prevention spectrum. On one end we've got abortion, still hotly debated. On the other end, I think it would be fair to place the 'you're the last guy on earth and she's the last girl on earth' scenario.

I did a poll about this a while ago, and if I recall correctly, I believe it was because of this same line of thinking. I asked if that above scenario was in place, would you restart the human race, or let it die out? Out of like 20 people only 2 said they'd let it end. I assume all the rest thought it'd be wrong to purposefully let the human race die out, to prevent it's resurgence.

So now there's a paradox. Most people think prevention with a condom shouldn't be considered wrong, but most people think preventing the return of the entire human race would be wrong.

I would rest on the thought that this paradox occurs because morality is subjective, and people are reaching their conclusions based on their emotions. In the condom situation, you see the potential overturning of a person's life, and in the apocalypse scenario, you see the potential extinction of the human race.

Whether or not I'm right, I'd like to thank Law and Order, and Man of Steel, which made me think about race extinction.
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dylancatlow
Posts: 12,251
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6/19/2014 8:44:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/19/2014 8:10:23 PM, MyDinosaurHands wrote:
Sometimes "what is right" is merely "what is righter". Accordingly, I think such paradoxes can be avoided.

This made me beg the question, would the children prefer to have never been born at all? Sure, they might not be happy about what their dad did, but does that mean they don't want to live anymore? In most instances, I think we can reach the conclusion of no, they wouldn't prefer having never been born.

I've had this thought as well, and come to the conclusion that the proper question to ask is not "would you prefer to have been born or not born" but "would you prefer to have been born without the issue in question" since we aren't anything before we are born.
PeacefulChaos
Posts: 2,610
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6/19/2014 8:53:11 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 6/19/2014 8:10:23 PM, MyDinosaurHands wrote:

This made me beg the question, would the children prefer to have never been born at all? Sure, they might not be happy about what their dad did, but does that mean they don't want to live anymore? In most instances, I think we can reach the conclusion of no, they wouldn't prefer having never been born.

But doesn't this man's arrest essentially guarantee that for future potential people? By arresting this man, the officers of the SVU are preventing lives from becoming. Is this wrong?

Well, it'd depend on what laws he was breaking (or what laws the prosecutors managed to make the judges & jury think he was breaking).

If he was going around raping women, then it'd have nothing to do with stopping people from being born. He's forcing people to do something against their will, which is obviously wrong and against the law.

If he was just having sex with them, then the only grounds to arrest him on would be for being a jerk by leaving families in emotional ruin. They wouldn't arrest him to stop future people for being born, but because he's hurting people in a certain way.
MyDinosaurHands
Posts: 203
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6/20/2014 10:56:53 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
since we aren't anything before we are born.
I've thought about it from that perspective too, but it makes me question the morality of the last people on earth scenario. If we aren't anything before we're born, then ending the human race doesn't matter. That's something I think most people would disagree with, however I don't think that necessarily makes it wrong.

I think what this does is show the two lines of thought, 'prevention is murder', which has a lot of hypocrisy along its various stages, and 'we aren't anything before we're born', which could also have hypocrisy practiced in its various stages.

I don't think either side is objectively correct, this is definitely evidence for subjective morality.
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MyDinosaurHands
Posts: 203
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6/20/2014 11:09:53 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Well, it'd depend on what laws he was breaking (or what laws the prosecutors managed to make the judges & jury think he was breaking).

If he was going around raping women, then it'd have nothing to do with stopping people from being born. He's forcing people to do something against their will, which is obviously wrong and against the law.

The guy wasn't raping, what they got him for was faking adoption and parenthood records.

Aside from that detail though, here's a question. If preventing life is held to be just as wrong as killing someone, would it have been wrong to stop this guy even if he was raping with intent to impregnate?

Because if he was, and they did arrest him, the opportunity for people to be born and have a life would be extinguished. If you view prevention of life as murder, then you can weigh rape v. murder and conclude that from a moral utilitarian standard, he shouldn't be arrested.

But most people would think that's ridiculous, they might refer to the 'we aren't anything before we're born' perspective, in which case this man should be arrested. It might be lazy to say that you can't argue for either side as right or wrong, but I think it's true. These two perspectives cannot be given an objective qualitative assessment. Both make sense in their own ways, which is the problem. The fact that they both make sense at the same time creates a paradox, which leads me to rest on subjective morality.
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R0b1Billion
Posts: 3,733
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6/20/2014 9:48:57 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
You're looking in the wrong place for morality, my friend. All that matters is that, after his children were conceived, he was too selfish to make them part of his life. Why waste time wondering whether the children would want to be born or any of that?
Beliefs in a nutshell:
- The Ends never justify the Means.
- Objectivity is secondary to subjectivity.
- The War on Drugs is the worst policy in the U.S.
- Most people worship technology as a religion.
- Computers will never become sentient.