We often make moral judgements about the actions of others. We proclaim that things like taking a billfold from person else’s pocketbook on a crowded train ; winging aeroplanes into the Twin Towers ; and intervening ( or non ) in the Syrian war are incorrect. Harmonizing to Gilbert Harman. such judgements about people’s actions are faulty because they lack relativity to the individual’s moral model. ( Harman. 1975 ) In ‘Some Moral Minima’ Goodman argues that “there are certain things that are merely incorrect.
” ( Goodman. 2010 ) I contend that right and incorrect are subjective. based upon elements of an individual’s belief system. and dependent upon the state of affairs. In this paper. I will discourse theory based statements to warrant my dissension with Goodman’s contention. When sing the theories of right and incorrect. it is customary to believe of them as absolute. If it’s incorrect. it can’t be right or if it’s right. it can’t be incorrect. It is merely when we stop looking at these theories as absolutes that we can get down to research the possibilities of moral. subjective and cultural relativity.
I submit that a person’s actions are merely right or incorrect comparative to their peculiar moral model. It is incorrect to kill is a statement that could be made by one based on his moral and/or cultural beliefs. thereby doing it a true statement. However. the image becomes blurred when that same adult male is responsible for administrating drugs to captives sentenced to decease. Some would reason that such Acts of the Apostless raze his moral model and alter the truthfulness of the statement. I submit that. to do such a judgement absent the benefit of cognizing the full extent of his moral beliefs would be flawed.
There is the possibility that he defines killing and transporting out a decease row sentence otherwise. Harman asserts that it is possible that when one says “It is incorrect to steal” s/he is stating something true. but that when another says “It is incorrect to steal” s/he is stating something false ( Harman & A ; Jarvis Thomson. 1996 ) . This theory. known as subjective relativity. is based on single beliefs and on reading. An illustration of subjectiveness in moral truth can be found in the authoritative narrative of Robin Hood. On the one manus. Robin Hood describes the King’s revenue enhancement of the hapless as stealing and provinces that it is inordinate and. hence. incorrect.
The judgement. based on his moral beliefs. is true. Robin Hood. nevertheless. justifies his ain Acts of the Apostless of stealing as charity. e. g. larceny from the rich to give to the hapless. In this scenario. for Robin Hood to state larceny is incorrect. he is saying a fact that is neither true. nor based on his moral beliefs. On the other manus. when looking upon Robin Hood’s Acts of the Apostless of stealing through the King’s eyes. to reason that Robin Hood is stealing and that stealing is incorrect would be a true statement made by one who believes that stealing is incorrect irrespective of the state of affairs.
These illustrations are supported by both individualistic and subjective relativism. Richard Joyce contends that “individualistic relativism sees the critical difference as prevarication in the individuals doing the vocalization. ” ( Joyce. 2007 ) . In the Confucian school of idea. Mencius developed his philosophical theory on the contention that man’s nature is inherently good ( Chan. 1996 ) . Chan maintains that based on Mencius’ doctrine. “all work forces have a head that can non bear human agony. ” Harmonizing to Chan. Mencius expounded on this place in the undermentioned extract.
“ [ tungsten ] biddy work forces all of a sudden see a kid about to fall into a well. they all have the feeling of dismay and hurt. non in order to derive friendly relationship with the child’s parents. nor to seek the congratulations of their neighbours and friends. nor because they dislike the repute ( for being un-virtuous ) … [ T ] he feeling of pity is the beginning of the feeling of love ; the feeling of shame and disfavor is the beginning of righteousness ; the feeling of respect and compliance is the beginning of wisdom.
Work forces have these four beginnings merely as they have four limbs. ‘ ‘These four. love. righteousness. properness and wisdom are non drilled into us from outside. We are originally provided with them. ” ( Chan ) In visible radiation of the information presented herein. the theories of right and incorrect are capable to cultural beliefs and moral individualism. It is my belief that subjectiveness is most prevailing in doing this finding.