Moral Relativism

Topics: Morality, Moral relativism, Ethics Pages: 2 (797 words) Published: May 11, 2013

Moral Relativism: A Contradictory Idea
Julian Watson
Intro to Philosophy
Moral relativism is the belief that there are no moral absolutes, and that morality (as a concept) is something that exists only in the mind of the individual. In theory, it’s an appealing philosophy, but when applied to serious issues on a global scale then you begin to create problems that generally lead to chaos and complete anarchy. In this paper, I will break down why Moral Relativism is potentially a contradictory idea. From culture to culture, what counts as being morally correct is widely varied. Slavery is deeply rooted in America’s past. One could argue in favor of moral relativism that the deep south of the 1800s wasn’t necessarily wrong for that time period because it was permitted by law by the Supreme Court (which is supposed to hold a high-standard for moral equality). With that argument in mind, slavery may as well be in full-effect in today’s society and it technically wouldn’t be a morally bad thing. Many people in today’s modern society still question whether the government is morally just or unjust. In theory, the government should be dependent on morality and not vice-versa. The same thing can be said about Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler in the 1940s with the slaughtering of approximately six-million Jews. He was able to convince his followers into following his orders and committing things against a group of people which would be considered heinous acts by most of today’s cultural standards. In theory, moral relativists could have an argument potentially defending Nazi Germany with the claim that since it was “morally correct” during that time-period, who’s to say it was the wrong thing for them to do? This is where the chaos and anarchy can potentially come into play. For example, another dictator (post-Hitler) could arise and target another grouping of people and even have a moral defense for his senseless killing because...
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