Why Be Moral – what kind of question is that? Morality is a good thing. Immorality is a bad thing. A person should always do good things and never do bad things. Doesn't everybody agree? Well, judging by people's behavior, not necessarily. But we also have to be careful not confuse 'ought' and 'is'. People do behave immorally. But they shouldn't. Everybody knows that - at least in their heart of hearts.
What is it
Morality tells us how we ought to behave, if we want to do the right thing. But is there a reason why we ought to be moral in the first place? Both Plato and Kant believed that morality is dictated by reason and so a fully rational person is automatically a moral person too. But how can we derive morality from reason? Isn’t it possible to be a rational but amoral or even immoral person? John and Ken walk the line with James Sterba from the University of Notre Dame, author of From Rationality to Equality.