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Category Archive: Ethics and morality

May 07 2011

Ethics of atheists

Via Machines Like Us, I came across this article by researchers Gregory Paul and Phil Zuckerman that challenges the view among some religious people that atheists have poor ethics. A growing body of social science research reveals that atheists, and non-religious people in general, are far from the unsavory beings many assume them to be. …

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Apr 20 2011

Eating more humanely

In response to my earlier post on the hostile response that vegetarians and vegans experience, commenter Mary Jo said she became a vegetarian but later returned to eating meat but with a renewed sensibility, saying “I still feel really sorry for the animals I eat. I eat meat that is certified to be humanely raised …

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Feb 04 2011

The hostile response that vegetarians and vegans experience

I recently had lunch with a group of people including one young woman who was a vegan. She said that she often received negative, even hostile, receptions from people she worked with or others in social settings when they found out she was a vegan, even though she was not a proselytizer about it and …

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Apr 03 2009

The stem cell issue-2: The ethics

Yesterday, I discussed the science involved in stem cell research. Today I want to discuss the ethics. The ethical problems associated with stem cell research occur because although the fertilized eggs were not created for the purposes of research but to help infertile couples, since the method of in vitro fertilization for the treatment of …

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Sep 01 2008

Taking advantage of people’s poverty

(Due to today being a Labor Day holiday and being ontravel, I am reposting an old item, edited slightly because I can never stop tinkering with what I have written. New posts will begin again tomorrow.) I read in the paper recently of an incident where the wealthy son of industrialist and his friends were …

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Aug 14 2008

The etiquette of food

After grappling with some heavy moral issues involving the treatment of animals and the eating of meat, I want to look at a related but lighter topic: the etiquette of food restrictions in the host-guest relationship. Sometimes I wonder if we have gone too far in being accommodating of people’s food restrictions, to the extent …

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Aug 13 2008

The ethics of food-10: Minimizing suffering

(For other posts in this series, see here.) The theory of evolution says that we are all connected in the tree of life. So humans are not only related to apes and other animals, we are also related to plants and even to the ‘lowly’ fungi. But no one is arguing that therefore we should …

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Aug 12 2008

The ethics of food-9: Does a good life compensate for an early death?

(For other posts in this series, see here.) In trying to arrive at some ethical consensus on how humans should treat nonhuman animals, I think we might all agree on a minimal condition: that once born, every animal deserves to have a good life while they are living. So that means that the inhumane treatment …

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Aug 11 2008

The ethics of food-8: Interests of species versus interests of individuals

(For other posts in this series, see here.) I wrote before that the theory of evolution, by giving all animals equal standing in the evolutionary tree of life, provides a strong argument against the exploitation of one sentient species by another. There seems to be no defensible criteria by which we can prefer the interests …

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Aug 07 2008

The ethics of food-7: Increasing the rights of animals

(For other posts in this series, see here.) In addition to the morality of treating all animals humanely, the arguments of the animal rights philosophers and activists that animals should have more legal rights are slowly gaining ground. It is clear that over time, humans are slowly expanding our circle of consideration to be more …

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