Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Promoting Ethics for and with People Like Us

The world, at present, appears to be in an ethical crisis. There has been some significant moral progress, but it seems like we are witnessing moral decline: actions and views that used to be seen as “beyond the pale” of decency are now common views: what used to be acceptable is now often accepted, with enthusiasm.

Given this, Global Ethics Day might appear to be an absurd event since we are collectively just so far from any widespread concern about ethics. But what can we do? Give up in seeking a more ethical world? That would be unethical.

So, what should we do? My discussion relates to what can be done about this by people interested in ethics and who have some training in getting people to better think about ethics. My suggestions largely relate to (a) acknowledging our own errors, (b) keeping things simple, (c) finding agreements and (d) continuing conversations.

While I am honestly unsure if this can lead to enough ethical goods, individually and collectively, it seems clear that we must try harder to finally figure out the “ethics” of, or what we should about, promoting ethics.

(What to say?)

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