This Thanksgiving, let's be mindful of the fact that we don't deserve all of the good things that God has given us (individually, and as a nation).... but that He gives us His gifts nevertheless.
There's a spiritual malady afflicting our homes, our workplaces, our political conversations, and how we speak to (and of) one another, both on- and offline. A major part of the cure is learning to recognize that those who are hardest to stand are often the ones closest to us, and that the call to charity is often in the little things of daily life.
Frequently, morality is spoken of as something akin to the offside rule in soccer: an arbitrary rule imposed by a higher authority that keeps up from getting to do what would make us happy. But this gets morality wrong in every way.
The New Republic’s latest “contribution” to the abortion debate is remarkable, in that, despite getting virtually everything it says factually wrong, it still raises an interesting problem for pro-choicers and atheists. Here’s the Twitter teaser to the piece that started it all: How the anti-choice platform is fighting to stay alive: http://t.co/m8kuGANs2Q pic.twitter.com/fxTeRyj444 — The New […]
What should we make of the idea that there’s no such thing as objective morality: that morals are just determined by cultures, or by individuals? That’s at the heart of a question that I address in the essay below. It’s taken from a draft of a midterm that I wrote dealing with moral relativism — more […]
One of the most common slogans in defense of abortion is “My Body, My Choice.” It’s an appeal to bodily autonomy, and it’s not all wrong. In fact, I think that there’s a lot that both sides can learn from it. I. What “My Body, My Choice” Gets Right Although it’s just a slogan, “My Body, […]
Yesterday marked the conclusion of my debate with Steven Dillion on objective morality and the existence of God. Here’s everything, in case you missed any of it: Monday (11/4) – Joe’s opening statement (affirmative)Tuesday (11/5) – Steven’s opening statement (negative)Wednesday (11/6) – Joe’s rebuttal (affirmative)Thursday (11/7) – Steven’s rebuttal (negative)Friday (11/8) – Questions exchanged (three questions each)Saturday (11/9) – Answers (Joe and Steven answer each other’s questions)Sunday […]
Envision in your mind an enormous tree containing many limbs, which branch off into smaller branches, which branch off into twigs, which sprout leaves. The branches and foliage are so thick that you can’t see the trunk of the tree at all. Alexandre Calame, Landscape with Oak (1859) Although you can’t see the trunk, you […]
My debate with Steven Dillon on whether objective morality can exist without God continues on Strange Notions. On Wednesday, they posted my rebuttal to Steven’s opening statement, and today, they posted Steven’s rebuttal to my opening statement. From my rebuttal: Is Agony Intrinsically Evil? In my opening statement, I suggested that non-theistic moral systems cannot […]
The Rana Plaza building near Dhaka, Bangladesh collapsed recently, killing (at latest count) 657 sweatshop workers, and seriously injuring thousands. Pope Francis responded in a homily, condemning the horrible wages and conditions: Not paying a just [wage], not providing work, focusing exclusively on the balance books, on financial statements, only looking at making personal profit. […]