‘Making words illegal violates our freedom of speech!’ Of course it does. But that freedom, like many others, isn’t absolute. Our freedoms are limited freedoms. They are limited by several things (Joel Feinberg identifies six liberty-limiting principles), one of which is the harm principle. That is, when our action harms another person or society in general, it is limited. It is illegal.
Subscribe to IEET Lists Daily News Feed
Longevity Dividend List
Catastrophic Risks List
Biopolitics of Popular Culture List
P. Tittle Topics
Science is the pursuit of knowledge according to the scientific method: hypotheses must be testable, and results must be verifiable by replication. Obviously, the more quantifiable something is, the more accurate and precise its measurement can be, and the more accurate and precise something is, the more testable and verifiable it is – it’s hard to test and then verify an uncertain or vague something-or-other.
Could someone without a business degree become a marketing consultant? Then how is it that people without philosophy degrees are becoming ethics consultants?  Is it that people don’t know that Ethics is a branch of Philosophy just as Marketing is a branch of Business? Doubtful. Is it just the typical male overstatement of one’s expertise?  Perhaps. Is it that people think they already know right from wrong, they learned it as children, there’s really no need for any formal training in ethics? P...
Thanks to genetic research, we may soon see people with the money to do so making sure their kids are born-to-succeed – parents paying to guarantee their kids have the right stuff. I’m not talking about a straightened spine or a functional optic nerve. I’m talking about designer kids: those made with healthy bodies, intelligent minds, and perhaps a certain specific ability to boot.
Could someone without a business degree become a marketing consultant? No? Then how is it that people without philosophy degrees are becoming ethics consultants?  Is it that people don’t know that Ethics is a branch of Philosophy just as Marketing is a branch of Business? Doubtful.
Transgendered people are often seen as courageous; they have the guts to take radical steps to become the people they really are. But I don’t see them as any different from people, mostly women, who get nip-and-tuck surgeries, botox, and breast enlargements. After all, they too take radical steps to become the people they feel they really are – youthful and sexually attractive.
Why should we pay men to actualize their hormonal impulse when we don’t pay women to actualize theirs?
My guess is that it started well enough, as sensitivity: people realized that terms such as ‘crippled’ and ‘retarded’ had gathered too many negative connotations, had become insults; so they replaced them with new words such as ‘physically challenged’ and ‘mentally challenged’ – words that, because new, would be free of such slant.
What exactly is cultural identity? Is there something fundamentally absurd about claiming as your identity aspects of your self that are mere accidents of birth? Is defining cultural identity as group history irrational because it lacks recognition of the individual?