John B Hodges's Blog Posts Tagged 'ethics' (12)

A Letter_to_the_Editor regarding Ethics.

On April 19, I read a commentary in the Roanoke Times by Clonnie_Yearout; Yearout (gender unknown) was arguing for Creationism and against "Darwinism". I sent the following in reply. The Times printed at least two letters (by other people) replying to Yearout, but not this one.  

FROM: John B. Hodges

(contact info)

TO: Editor, letters page

I would like this considered for a COMMENTARY or OP-ED.


Clonnie Yearout's commentary ("A Tale of…


Added by John B Hodges on May 4, 2013 at 4:23am — 1 Comment

Yes, Christian Fundamentalists are Teaching Genocide in Our Schools.

Katherine Stewart has an article on AlterNet:

Are Christian Fundamentalists Teaching Genocide in Our Schools?

There are many people who don't believe in a god but who don't call themselves atheists, because they don't regard it as important. They…


Added by John B Hodges on June 2, 2012 at 7:18am — 1 Comment

1995 essay: Why I am a former Objectivist and former Libertarian.

Nov. 12, 1995; Why I am a former Objectivist and former Libertarian. 

Mike Huben writes: (begin quote)

One of my eventual projects for my Critiques of Libertarianism web site

is to present something on folks who have left, like yourself. If you

have any material about why people leave, including your own personal

history, I'd be very interested to get ahold of it. What first cracks

the certainty, what conspicuously doesn't work, what was the turnoff,…

Added by John B Hodges on August 3, 2011 at 1:46pm — 6 Comments

Defining Five Terms

August 21, 1998. Defining five terms. Rand used the term "objective" differently than most philosophers.

Some definitions, from Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th edition.

OBJECTIVE: ... in the realm of sensible experience, independent of individual thought and perceptible by all observers; having reality independent of the mind.... perceptible to persons other than the affected individual... OBJECTIVISM: an ethical theory that moral good is objectively real or…


Added by John B Hodges on March 13, 2011 at 1:48pm — 3 Comments

A Short Reply for an "Objective Basis for Ethics"

On Friday March 4, there was an article on a right-wing Christian site:

Atheists Targeting Nation With Godless Media Blitz




Added by John B Hodges on March 13, 2011 at 6:49am — 2 Comments

Passive and Active Atheism


Atheism is often defined as "the absence of god-beliefs". This

definition is useful in debate, because it does not assume any burden of…


Added by John B Hodges on August 29, 2010 at 6:00am — 6 Comments

Determinism Irrelevant

Years ago I decided that the issue of "free will vs. determinism" is irrelevant to questions of ethics, and untestable with respect to matters of science. Since then I have tried to avoid wasting time on it. But it comes up every now and then in Freethinker circles, and many people are lured into arguing at length over it.

Our ordinary practice is to ascribe "free will" to beings which are conscious and intelligent. "Conscious" meaning that they have an internal…

Added by John B Hodges on July 7, 2010 at 2:33pm — 13 Comments

The Uncensored Ten Commandments

The theocratic Right is conducting a "Hang Ten!" crusade, to get the Ten Commandments posted on the walls of government buildings such as schools and courthouses, to give government endorsement to them. But the versions posted are usually edited and paraphrased, creating a false impression. Perhaps people would be more wary of these efforts if they read the original text, and understood the "divinely ordained" penalties attached. The following quotes will help put the Commandments in…

Added by John B Hodges on July 7, 2010 at 2:11pm — 9 Comments

The Apple

Would you bite the apple that gave knowledge of good and evil? Read on.

We find ourselves alive and conscious. What shall we do with our lives? Beware "fishers of men". If we demand that someone else supply us with a purpose, someone else may DO just that. Purpose is ours to choose.

There is a natural "default" purpose, which we may choose if we like. We all have parents, as did they, back to the beginning of life.…

Added by John B Hodges on July 7, 2010 at 1:58pm — No Comments

Why Be Ethical?

April 12, 1997; Trying to address the question of "Why be ethical?" Why
care about other people, why work to make the world a better place? A
collection of reasons.

"What IS ethical?" and "Why BE ethical?" are two DIFFERENT questions,
but the answers are related. Different answers to the first make the
second a different question. If a theory of ethics does not answer the
second, its answer to the first is…

Added by John B Hodges on July 7, 2010 at 1:33pm — No Comments

Is and Ought; Rand's MetaEthics

This was not originally written for an Objectivist audience; I was arguing with a Kantian on an Atheist list. -JBH


March 7, 2001;…


Added by John B Hodges on April 15, 2010 at 2:54am — 1 Comment

Attitudes of Atheists toward Religion

October 12, 1997. Attitudes of atheists toward religion.

Nonbelievers call themselves by a variety of names, and have
formed a plentitude of organizations (despite their small numbers). I
think this is due to the range of attitudes they have on crucial
issues, foremost among them religion.

Recently, on an email discussion list, I read one man's comment
that he preferred the…

Added by John B Hodges on March 7, 2010 at 3:06pm — 2 Comments

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