Can you reason your way into being a good person? Or are your feelings a better guide for doing the right thing? This week we’re thinking about German enlightenment philosopher Immanuel Kant and his view of a universal morality based on reason.
Kant's Guide to Morality
Are “Human” Embryos Human?
Opponents of abortion argue that because embryos belong to our species, they are human embryos, and are therefore human beings. And as killing innocent human beings is wrong, abortion is wrong. But is it correct to say that human embryos are human beings?
When Do False Beliefs Exculpate? (Pt. I)
Another month of pandemic... and another philosophical puzzle from me to distract you from it. This time, the puzzle concerns beliefs and specifically whether acting under the guidance of false beliefs can exculpate someone of a moral wrongdoing.
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 Ethicists and Jerks
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.”