Ethics

#FrancisOnFilm: The Mole Agent

The Mole Agent is a charming documentary about a private investigator hired to find out whether elder abuse is happening at a nursing home in Chile. At the heart of the film is a deception, which raises questions about trust beyond the question whether lies can ever be justified by good intentions.

Kant on Lying to Robots, Part II

I recently posed a puzzle about Kant's moral philosophy. The puzzle was this: if lying is always wrong, would it be wrong (according to Kant’s theory) to lie to a robot with speech technology who came to your door trying to locate innocent people who were hiding from a tyrannical government?

On Jerks and Ethicists

Can studying moral philosophy make you more moral? Could it make you less moral? How do we become more virtuous? Or should we all just settle for moral mediocrity? These are some of the questions we’re thinking about on this week’s show, “The Ethical Jerk.”

A Cat's Life

Listener Jacob B. in the UK got in touch with a question on our recent "Pet Ethics" show. He wanted to know if preventing his cat from staying out at night to make sure she is not killed by a fox means he is depriving her of an essential part of a cat's life experience. Ray responds.

The Ethics of Pet Keeping

Do we really have the right to own our fellow creatures? Are there some animals that should never be kept as pets? Is it okay to declaw a cat, clip a bird’s wings, or dock a dog's tail? These are some of the questions we're asking on this week's show.