Saturday, February 26, 2011
Harm and Morality
I came to some insights tonight while considering the arguments of proponents of the so-called "reproductive health" and "responsible parenthood" bill. I tend to argue from the perspective of harm because that is more readily tangible and simpler to describe. It is also easier to support on the basis of many scientific studies available online. On the other hand, a staunch advocate of contraceptives has convinced me of one thing: they can always argue from their relative perceptions of benefits that outweigh the risks. If the notion is completely subjective, then there is no way to show that the harm is too great, since neither one is objectively quantifiable, nor even objectively understandable. In other words, they may well understand the incredible risks the face with STDs and unwanted pregnancy leading to divorce, but shrug that off as being "worth it". It's a scary thought, but that is how many people think these days. On the other hand, such rationalizations will probably treat arguments on the basis of morality in the same way. What a horrible beast relativism is. A truly insidious undermining of truth.