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Moral education

  1. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    It seems that modern education system only promotes making money. The present generation is doing everything for livelihood rather lifestyle. But they have forgotten the life.

      Education system has to be overhauled and moral education is to be integrated to solve many of present days' problem.

       Jyoti Kothari

    1. VENUGOPAL SIVAGNA profile image60
      VENUGOPAL SIVAGNAposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      A very good proposal ! Moral education is a must in all schools and colleges.  Prior to 1965, there was a special weekly period for all classes called "moral instruction period".  I dont know how, when and why was it withdrawn.  It should be reintroduced in India; and if possible, elsewhere.

      1. Nickny79 profile image88
        Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

        I heartily agree.  Ethics courses are required in medical and law school, but one can scarcely inculcate good judgment at such a late stage.  A baseline foundation of Morals/Ethics must be taught to students from the moment they set foot in school, and local commuities (not government bureaucrats, union bosses, or fringe activists) should decide on the content of the curriculum.  This can be done without infringing on people's freedom of worship. 

        Better yet, public schools should be closed altogether, and gov't should subsidize private schools with vouchers and tax credits so that PARENTS have the ultimate choice.  Parents should have the right to choose who educates their children and the gov't should mitigate the financial burden of making such a choice.

  2. smarcuse profile image59
    smarcuseposted 8 years ago

    The comments seem odd to me. I went through 16 years of the modern American education system without ever having a class on making money. Morality and lifestyle were discussed incessantly.

    It may be that with majoring in literature, the expectations of me every making money are low. And, by the way, the moral lessons and lifestyle learned from literature are not always that desirable.

  3. SweetiePie profile image84
    SweetiePieposted 8 years ago

    Every single group seems to have a different idea about what constitutes "moral education".  I think it is better for families to teach their children about moral education, and to allow the schools to teach life skills and academics.

  4. dingdong profile image60
    dingdongposted 8 years ago

    I agree with SweetiePie, Moral doesn't have same meaning in all cultures and countries smile

  5. allshookup profile image61
    allshookupposted 8 years ago

    This is an interesting thread. Good job. I don't think public schools teach anything much of anything that is moral. It's seems to lean to being pc. For those of you how know me know that that's one thing you cannot call me........politically correct. As parents, we take our son's education very seriously. And we feel it's our responsiblity to make sure he has the education he needs for every aspect of life. The lifeskills taught in public schools around here is safe sex. Not what I want someone other than me or my husband teaching our son. I feel they are being taught the opposite of moral life lessons. I see it. There have been so many many mothers who have told me how good their child was, then they went to school, and even headstart changed them into a 'bad' child. It ruins their attitudes so many times around here. I say around here because that's the only place I can speak of since this is where we live. They announced yesterday that they are going to cut a ton of teacher's jobs soon. They don't have money to buy toilet paper for the students and teacher's bathrooms now. How bad will it get? I feel that too many parents are leaving it up to school teachers to raise their kids when it's not their responsiblity, it's the parent's.

  6. SweetiePie profile image84
    SweetiePieposted 8 years ago

    My opinion is people should send their children to private school or home teach them if they feel the public school is not meeting their needs.  I went to public school and I was always a good kid and well behaved.  Ultimately if you teach your children right from wrong they will make good choices, no matter where they go.  However, it never hurts to investigate the private school route if the public schools in your area on not meeting your needs.  I know one of our local private schools even offers partial scholarships for kids with good grades and for family with constrained budgets.

    You may not agree with sex education, but that does not mean other kids do not have the right to learn about safe sex practices.  Did you ever see the show Seventh Heaven?  I used to watch it from time to time, and the youngest son Simon became sexually active when he went off to college.  The parents did not agree with it, but they could not control his behavior.  The reality is your children can grow up and do many things you will not always be able to control, and sometimes it is good for them to know about safe sex practices.  It may not be the ideal choice if they go that route, but cutting them off from knowledge might hurt them later on.

    Actually come to think of it in our sex education classes the teacher told us about birth control, but emphasized abstinence.  Most schools out here in California do not even have these type of classes until high school.

  7. countrywomen profile image59
    countrywomenposted 8 years ago

    I studied till my under grad in india and did my MS here in US. So I will try to relate from both view points. We had moral science classes where people from different religious backgrounds would teach good points to promote understanding and tolerance. India is a secular country with a diverse belief systems hence it is considered important in most schools. But some schools only focus on academics and maybe other life skills which are important for pursuing further education(like Masters or PhD) or career.

    Sex education is still not a widely discussed subject except for 8/9th class biology syllabus. Mostly we come to know some overview from parents and friends about these issues.

    I have seen people who never have interacted with someone from other backgrounds tend to fill the gaps in their understanding with their own perceptions that leads to many misunderstandings. To that extent I feel a kid needs to grow up knowing the holistic world view besides their own tunnel vision to be able to better relate to others in this big world.

    I have been here in US for over 4 years and feel people who grewup from areas with diverse backgrounds(california/new york....etc) can relate to me better. I see this due to the class diversity that they studied also must have had people from diverse backgrounds which helps them to have a broader world view.

    Ultimately the purpose of education should be to prepare a kid not just academically but also socially to be able to succeed in the present day world.

  8. sunforged profile image63
    sunforgedposted 8 years ago

    I wouldnt go so far as to trust the instilling of morals to parents, around 17 in the US the lackof morals in an individual becomes a societal problem, so it would be nice if such a thing COULD be helped along by an education system.

    The issue of what constitutes morals and what can be funded by public coffers is a much bigger question.

    As another Liberal Arts degree holder, money and finance was lacking in my educational curriculum (religious thought,philosophy,history and world culture was not)

    Its nice to hear how important such things are to parents, but that doesnt mean they are successful or that they have the proper time to do such things with the average workload.

    The thread seemed to lean towards sex education, that is another societal issue, and absolutely cannot be left up to parents. I dont see how anyone could imagine that they were capable of shielding children from exposure to sex in advertising and culture, but the conservative views that many try to impress only lead to rebellion. That is basic human nature, not morality

    This is an unanswerable question.

    i would point out the cliche' "it takes a village"

  9. 61
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  10. 61
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  11. aka-dj profile image80
    aka-djposted 8 years ago

    Moral education in a pluralist/multicultural society inevitably raises the question, "who's morality", as has already been pointed out. In the case of, say, the US, it would have been Christian values that shaped social behaviour (morality). In the Middle east, say Iran, it is Islam, and it's world view. Put the two ( just for simplicity sake,) and there would be contention. Add to that the myriad of other worldviews ( not neccessarily religions) and that complicates it further.
    Perhaps the (government of ) the majority (?) should determine the standard and all to simply submit to it. But, of course this has been done in may societies both today and throughout history, and inevitably, the "moral" standard declines.

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      I love when people start preaching about multiculturalism and pluralism in this context.  Invariably, the proponent fails to acknowledge that plurism and multiculturalism itself presupposes moral valuations, namely that it's "good" to be multicultural; that pluralism and diversity has "social utility";  that it's "bad" to impose some specific morality on others, e.g. to force Muslims to accept Christian, Western values; that the gov't shouldn't endorse any moral standards (even though the whole penal code does just that) lest we offend some fringe group.  There is always a moral standard, and people are always imposing their moral standard even when they say they are not endorsing one! Often, it's the very ones who hide their moral agenda under the guise of pluralism and tolerance that are the most intolerant and dismissive (read "liberals") in the face of a challenge.

      1. aka-dj profile image80
        aka-djposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        So what are you proposing?
        I know what moral values I would like to see. My comments were meant to cover the "reality" as it is on the ground (in many countries). Personally I don't agree with pluralism/multi-culturalism. I think it brings division, more than diversity.

      2. allshookup profile image61
        allshookupposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        Nickny79 - Very well said and high time someone said it!!!!

    2. Coolbreezing profile image68
      Coolbreezingposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      If individuals set the rule of standard than by definition the rule of standard hold variable values which can be manipulated to comfort individuals. This logic states that if individuals set the rules of standards than what is ethical to one group of individuals maybe unethical to another, I agree. But is there a standard definition for morality? Yes there is ..not all morality hold variable values ….murder is an immoral act in all society.

      Yes, it is true that what’s immoral to me maybe morally right to another. It’s the same principle I used to determine that perfection has variable values in the sense that it’s not consistent with all views. It’s obvious what’s perfect to me may not be perfect to you. I believe we both agreed that the same approach can be carried towards immorality.

  12. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    I meant to say morality as humanity or values. It has a subtle difference between  religion and morality.

      So called organized religions generally promote their own ethical values with the name of their God or Prophets. They do not bear with other religions.

      Moral values or good things or humanity is similar every where, in every religion and culture. The school education may contain the values, not the names of particular persons.

      While starting the thread I had no intention that the schools would give up teaching skills for livelihood. I have intended to add some moral values with present curriculum.

      Jyoti Kothari

  13. greathub profile image77
    greathubposted 8 years ago

    Morals taught at home by parents have much more impact on a person than those taught at school.

  14. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    I agree with you but it is needed in schools too. Many parents are in working class and do not find time for their children.

       Jyoti Kothari

  15. AngloSaxon profile image84
    AngloSaxonposted 8 years ago

    The answer is simple - let parents teach their children at home and let private schools uphold the basic values of the parents, communities of like-minded parents establishing their own schools or homeschools where they can find none that appeal to them.


    "Often, it's the very ones who hide their moral agenda under the guise of pluralism and tolerance that are the most intolerant and dismissive (read "liberals") in the face of a challenge." (Nickny79)

    Very true.

    It's also true - as has been pointed out - that all laws are based on someone's or some group's idea of morality, even traffic laws. Personally my view is that a government should provide a libertarian base: protection of the life, liberty and property of an individual and then allow society to otherwise regulate itself, including the independence of local government levels (communities) to establish constitutions and compacts that allow "higher laws" to come into force which would generally govern according to the will of the people in a like-minded community. This way:

    * everyone is protected in their inherent and inalienable rights across the country
    * everyone is free from having the "higher law" morals imposed upon them
    * everyone is free to protect themselves from what they deem to be immoral or inapproriate

  16. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 8 years ago

    So Anglo Saxson you wouldn't mind hundreds of thousands of
    like Pennsylvania Dutch communities and all different. Good luck with that.

  17. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    It is a good debate. Every one is coming with his or her own view. I hope a concensus will develop.
    One more thing, I am not talking in context of America but of the world.

       Jyoti Kothari

    1. countrywomen profile image59
      countrywomenposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Jyoti- Its ok even in American (USA) people from the New England states, Deep South, Midwest or West coast each will have different views about what to include and what not to include. We can be open to all contexts to understand each other better.

  18. Nickny79 profile image88
    Nickny79posted 8 years ago

    I think the best solution to the problem is to privatize schools, provide everyone with vouchers, and let them choose the schools of their choice.  Public schools are machines of propaganda, the trough of teachers unions and a cauldron of liberal social engineering.  Free markets uber alles!

    1. countrywomen profile image59
      countrywomenposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      I guess the same thing(vouchers) was tried in Virginia and was also mentioned during the speeches between (McCain and Obama). My first comment was from an Indian perspective in Indian schools but I don't have much knowledge about the school system here (I only did my MS from US).

    2. allshookup profile image61
      allshookupposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Great ideas and well said!

  19. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    Many  suggest voucher system in India but it is not yet implemented.

       Jyoti Kothari

  20. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 8 years ago

    "Public schools are machines of propaganda," Like a christian school is not. How about a private 'Flat Earth Society School'.

  21. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image74
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 8 years ago

    What for?

       Jyoti Kothari

  22. Sufidreamer profile image81
    Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago

    This just popped up on my Hubtivity after I just wrote a paper about it! Serendipity!

    In The Abolition of Man, C S Lewis wrote in 1943, that schools were failing to teach moral judgment. By this, he means giving the children the confidence and guidance to make emotional judgments and make their own decisions about right and wrong. Instead of teaching then 'This is Wrong' or 'This is Right,'  they are encouraged to make their own emotional assessments.

    He also states that teaching children facts without ethics leads to intelligent adults who are not whole. The sum of this is that an elite dominates the rest of humanity, with little concern for right and wrong. Considering that he wrote that over 50 years ago and looking at how wealth now resides in the hands of a few immoral Wall Street/LSE idiots, that is pretty visionary.

    A lot more complex than that, but that is the gist. It would also circumvent the problem of 'Whose morals do we teach?"

  23. Sufidreamer profile image81
    Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago
  24. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 8 years ago

    "Considering that he wrote that over 50 years ago and looking at how wealth now resides in the hands of a few immoral Wall Street/LSE idiots, that is pretty visionary." Except seems to me
    that 'in the hands of a few immoral Wall Street/LSE idiots' has been more than 50 years, like the twenties, or 1800 railroad robber barons, or the early 1800 dope smuggling into China,
    the profits of which built many of the great US universities and railroads as well, or the British empire and on.

  25. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 8 years ago

    "A baseline foundation of Morals/Ethics"
    You make a distinction that most people do not.
    My opinion is that morality is treating something based on its assessed value, the more value the better the treatment, as the difference between homeless and rich. Allows the exploitation of the lesser.
    Ethics is all treated the same, and mistreatment of that which is different is prohibited. Prohibits exploitation. Ethics is somewhat out of fashion.

  26. Nickny79 profile image88
    Nickny79posted 8 years ago

    There are many ways of conceptualizing morality.  Let me educate you.  For example:

    1.  "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."  This quote is an example of a Deontological conceptualization of morality.  Famous proponents include Jesus and Immanuel Kant.

    2.  "Certain qualities make a person more likely to live a full and happy life.  These qualities are called "virtues" [e.g. honesty, justice, judgement, self-control] and their opposites are "vices."  This mode of thinking is called "Virtue Ethics."  Famous proponents of this systems of ethics include Aristotle and St. Thomas Aquinas.

    3.  Your confused conceptualization:  "My opinion is that morality is treating something based on its assessed value, the more value the better the treatment, as the difference between homeless and rich."  This  is a Utilitarian line of thinking.  "Utility, or the greatest good for the great number" as the foundation of morality. Famous proponents include John Stuart Mill and Jeremy Bentham.

    4.  "Ethics is all treated the same, and mistreatment of that which is different is prohibited. Prohibits exploitation. Ethics is somewhat out of fashion."  This is not an accepted moral line of thinking by anyone looking to have a serious dicussion on the matter.  It sounds like a very crude, Marxist sounding noise, and it is self-refuting statement both logically and empirically.

    Logical Refutation:  If Ethics is treating everyone, then "ethical people" according to your mode of thinking should treat the following to classes of people the same:

    1.  people who treat others the same
    2.  people who treat others different.

    Class 1 and class 2 get the same treatment, and treating class 2 differently would be prohibited...and that would defeat the purpose of your scheme logically.

    Empirical Refuation:  If we are to treat everyone the same, then we would not be able to stop those who commit genocide because they are "different" than the majority who espouse human rights, therefore according to your argument we should treat those guilty of genocide no differently than those who espouse human rights.  Obviously this cannot be an acceptable conclusion.

    As the great Aristotle said, "The greatest injustice is treating unequal things equally." 

    If Ethics is out of fashion, does society act intelligibly when they pass judgment against the Nazis, or serial killers, or child molesters?  Should society not enforce laws or criminal codes because they are based on ethical principles?  Or maybe you're just an smarter than all the rest of us?...yeah I think that's it.

  27. knolyourself profile image59
    knolyourselfposted 8 years ago

    1.  "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."
    Some people would have you do unto them in despicable ways, it being only fair. Criminals may expect to be stolen from themselves,
    they being theives, and thus carry guns.

  28. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Nick--
    The following are not baited questions--though I realize I've had a little fun doing that in other forums..  lol, sorry. smile

    I'm honestly curious.  Did you actually read Marx, and if you did indeed read him, did you do that outside of a Catholic academic sphere?  (Before you presuppose any prejudice--and you actually do a lot, don't know if you realize-I grew up Catholic.)

    What do you think of the statement that all morality has its basis in compassion?

    BTW, Knol I believe is an intelligent thinker--just not perhaps traditionally schooled.  I haven't got a full grasp on him yet--just know he isn't prone to long explanation, just more pithy phrasing.

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Yes, I have read Marx and have studied with professors who were in no way Catholic or conservative in their views, even in my "Catholic academic sphere."

      I disagree with your statement...I would say SOME morality has its basis in compassion.  But it is clear that many valid and compelling moral systems do not have compassion as their basis, or not primarily so.  e.g.  ancient Greek virtue ethics, 19th century English Utilitarianism among others.

  29. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Nick-

    Well, you are disagreeing with the statement of Arthur Schopenhauer concerning compassion, not mine (presupposition?).  Anyway, what I was trying to get at is what do espouse as your beliefs as far as morality? What do you think is a valid model for today?

    And the thing is--with your somewhat bandying about of Marx--and if that is what you actually believe-and with your idea that the public schools should be done away with completely to be replaced with a system of vouchers only...  Have you any idea--give or take ideology--how impractical and nearly impossible that would be?  It isn't a question of politics but one of simple math--MOST kids would not have an education--no matter how broke you may think the public school system is.  It isn't pragmatic and it isn't utilitarian..  So, with ascertaining these 'beliefs', you also sound kind of like you are giving off a bit of crude noise.

    Last time I checked, even in the Obama admin., which I'm sure you find impossibly leftist, nobody was planning to enact soviet style 'communism.'  Which I'm sure you have a grasp of what I'm saying, since you've read Marx, a Utopian visionary (not a sarcastic statement, either).

    You know, just because you don't like being surrounded by lots of ultra liberals or bimbo-ettes, lol, who have clumsy conceptions of their beliefs doesn't give you (as an intelligent person) the right to misguided anger and similar blatherings--only to the right.

    The problem with the values in the Midwest as far as I see (if you were not being facetious in an older post) is that those states are actual more centrist politically.  Which in itself is not bad--it is good and the people much of the time don't realize this, but life is actually pretty good there.  So that they have something of a myopic view of life in general (not smart ones like kerryg & ralph; I know guys), don't read what they should (and I am from the Midwest, so again, no presuppositions--this is my analysis of my Komrades) and make political ideological decisions based a lot on what essentially are TV commercials.  Explaining why they lean 'conservative.' 

    However, a Chuck Hagel conservative is way different from a McCain 'conservative,' believe me.

    It never fails to alarm me how people smart enough to be doctors or lawyers (and yeah, that is bourgeois, but so what?  About 30 you realize you have to make a living) just seem to refuse to read, as must be the case--either that, or they are concerned about their pocket books--anything of remote current intellectual value.  How the hell else does it explain the radiologist we had dinner with tonight, ie, still talking about the Obama birth certificate stupidity in all seriousness.  So, sorry, but bandying Marx and picking up misinformation on crap rightist websites when you can layout a conceptualization of ethics above doesn't and should not cut it.

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

        The Heritage Society's website is hardly crap.  It was founded by President Regan and Prime Minister Thatcher, and regularly receives contributions from acclaimed scholars and journalists. When you said "picking up misinformation" for a second I thought you were talking about the New York Times...very presumptious of me, I know... wink

      1. Sufidreamer profile image81
        Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        The UK is still recovering from that woman's reign. She is not really a great example for moral guidance, more an example of how to completely break apart a society.

  30. AngloSaxon profile image84
    AngloSaxonposted 8 years ago

    Morality to me is founded in eternal law based upon the nature of ourselves as sons and daughters of God. I cannot see any permanence to man-made ideas on morality or the basis thereof and believe history bears me out. To quote a couple of the American Founders:

    "Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they, therefore, who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure...are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments” (Charles Carroll, as quoted in Steiner, 1907, p. 475, emp. added).

    "And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle." (George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796)

    Full article:

    Morality Without Religion? (by Dave Miller, PhD)
    http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2720

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      My guardian angel has arrived.  I agree with you wholeheartedly.

  31. Scott Mandrake profile image61
    Scott Mandrakeposted 8 years ago

    The world has always been led by those who are morally flexible.  These elite have maintained control of the masses by giving them moral guidelines. eg, religion, socialism, etc.

    Though I have proven to be somewhat anti religious, I do find some advice for harmonious living to be found in the spiritual teachings of others.  I especially love the "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" "eye for an eye" version of morality.

    That being said, I firmly believe that humans are not designed to live harmoniously.  We require a constant state of flux in order to feed our emotional appetites.  Having those who can transcend the moral limitations of the social norm, are those who have led to many great and terrible things.  The debate of comparative morality shall go on forever.

    As for the education of morality, we can only safely teach perspective and let each person evaluate for themselves.  Right and wrong is not for us to dictate.

    Scott

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this
      1. Scott Mandrake profile image61
        Scott Mandrakeposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        Nickny79,

        I did not say they were the same. I merely stated that I like both.


          Really, do you propose we abolish our laws and penal codes?  Do you propose that we allow dictators to commit genocide?  Why not reinstate segregation if right and wrong is not for us to decide?


        It would be excellent for us to stop assuming that right and wrong is the same as acceptable and unacceptable.  Our laws are not based on whats right and wrong, they are based on varying levels of acceptable behavior.  Otherwise there would be no such thing as justifiable homicide.  There would be no flexible sentencing and a unanimous zero tolerance policy. 

        There will always be your truth, my truth and the truth.  The truth, just like right and wrong, are beyond our understanding, thus making rules based on this concept fallible. Acceptable and unacceptable however are always in flux and based on your truth and mine.

        So to answer your question, no.  I feel that many of our laws, even though subject to scrutiny, represent our best efforts at harmony, should not be carelessly tossed aside.

        I applaud your enthusiasm for debate, however arguing comparative morality with a philosopher is an exercise in futility smile


        Scott

        1. Nickny79 profile image88
          Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this
  32. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Nick-
    Except for your personal beliefs on a code of morality, none of what you said has anywhere near the level of engagement, frankly, somebody with a certain amount of education should have.  (Which is OK--whatever--this is just a public forum on hubpages).  Incidentally, I knew you were going to write like this with the numbering points--hate that--cheap trick.  You are not teaching anymore, so the ol teacher's tricks don't work, lol.

    While I agree that the state of public schools is a mess right now (interviewed as a teacher, actually in Harlem & the Bronx), it is hardly the work of the left wing socialists, but a combination of factors.  It will be difficult to address and slapping Bush-level intellectual answers on it (vouchers) is hardly the answer.  'College subsidizing' in the form of student loans is also a mess.  Read john taylor gatto or john dewey out of curiosity?

    The Obama birth cert. flap:  OMG.  This is so unserious from any institutional let alone constitutional level that I'd worry a little bit about hiring you as a lawyer.  Yes, of course somebody 'can make a case' for it.  That doesn't make it a serious case-only more excessively bad PR move on the Republican side.  The same w/ Heritage Foundation--which incidentally, I was not talking about.  Read Andrew Sullivan?  Intelligent conservative.  HUGE difference.

    Given how you phrase the stuff about Manhattan and the Midwest and the people, etc.(mine is not a bald generalization, I'd say, but more of a meta analysis taking a step back from it, and now living in true red state hell) leads me to believe you are something of a pocket book conservative and also just not really as experienced as you could be... Because, yeah, of course there are a lot of depraved among the 'better neighborhoods,' this is not a shock to me, as I did not grow up wealthy even if that is who we somewhat consort with during this period in my life.

    We actually agree on McCain....  Though saying 'conservatism will prevail' is a blanket statement and not a good analysis of history....  Save the 'farts' statements for impressing bimbo-ettes, if you will, lol, smile

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      I have read Gatto's work.  He's quite good. 

      You have not responded with any serious substantive arguments to my previous post beside asking me to provide you a bibliography--as if somehow this proves something.  I have no need to defend my professional or academic credibility on hubpages as there are plenty of successful professionals, even in Marxist NYC, that wholeheartedly agree with my views.   When you are able to replace your ad hominem reactions with substantive arguments, then we can continue.

      1. 0
        Leta Sposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        Sorry, that doesn't work either.  You are not in charge of the discussion and last time I checked, just having a dialogue was something that even conservatives espoused.  This also isn't about being a successful professional--although I believe it somewhat is for you (hence you believing I'm asking for a bibliography).  It's cool!  I'm not that mean.  Ain't like I haven't been where you are.

        I do not see YOU addressing anything of the more substantive comments I just made, just trying to blow some lawyerly smoke in my eyes.

  33. SparklingJewel profile image67
    SparklingJewelposted 8 years ago

    I am so impressed with the intellectual "debate" attack on each other, you two have going, (truly, but it is ultimately hohum!)...much more importantly, it is not constructive.

    Can either of you put that much energy into working together for  constructive potential answers to the problems  that stare us in the face? Seriously, we stand at the precipice of self destruction, and if we don't all learn to let go of the ego desires to be right or in power  and focus on the issues at hand, where will we be?

    May we continue...I am enjoying the discussion...hearing where others are is very informative and can be constructive...how many of you have children and have had these issues to deal with, and have seen where your children have ended up...what worked in your view, from what you implemented?

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Some egos enjoy being in power and being right; other egos apparently enjoy being self-righteous. Each plays his part in the drama of existence.

      1. SparklingJewel profile image67
        SparklingJewelposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        My point exactly, being that drama has too much pull on life and is a big part of the problems we face as a nation. Transcending this drama is more in order to establish the organization that is needed. Dealing within situations with a calm and  humble mind and soul brings the ultimate answers because it connects us with our highest consciousness, where the highest good for all can be determined.

        I have realized after 35 years of motherhood, that providing the means for my 4 children of that one core belief as a habit for life, of establishing that ability to "center" oneself, has proved for them to be the most beneficial tool to rise above their varied educational circumstances.

        I have experimented with all types of schooling; homeschool and homeschool groups, public, private, religious, secular, online, charter, self initiated, Montessori, classic curriculum, concepts of the Napolean Hill philosophy, tutors, private and group lessons in particular subjects, I have supplemented for their individual needs to meet my idea of a "whole brain" education. It does take a lot, it can be a full time endeavor, and was part of the time. Actually another core building block was that personal attention they were given and to experience the joy of learning...that was a big factor in helping them create a momentum for success for themselves.

        They each have a strong, healthy and stable sense of right and wrong, acceptable and unacceptable, if you will, and the ability to establish sound relationships. It is my belief that these are a few of the core foundational building blocks for a good education.  Perfect they are not, issues they have, like the rest of us...but how boring it would be if life was simple! big_smile

        It seems to me at this point in time, that helping children establish that "center" for themselves, is THE tool for success. With that in hand, they can navigate any rough waters of life they may encounter.
        Though I believe that  establishing a spiritual life is the way to find this "center", it can either be created through a religion, or a secular lifestyle.

        Though personally, I like the concepts of God/ Universal Order/Infinite Intelligence and the belief in the importance of a sense of security in knowing "the importance of being a part of that Universal Order", is paramount to establish the esteem necessary for a fully functioning heart and mind, there are many that have a moral system of standards that lead good lives that don't have a religious/spiritual concept for life.

        With that center the best answers can be found to benefit the most people. Along with a lot of prayer! for guidance big_smile

    2. 0
      Leta Sposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Jewel-
      It's not necessarily what it looks like on the surface (at least not my surface).  I think he's smart, but...????  Kinda a waste.

      In Arizona we have one of the greatest incidence of private charter schools in the country.  AZ also ranks dead last in a recent measurement of education effectiveness.  In the very small community where I know find myself, there are lots of choices--4 or 5 schools.  They all suck.  Worst run places I've seen and that includes the Bronx.  So much for privatization, which will only ever work for an elite few.

      Before I moved out here, a friend of mine from high school (who moved here years ago) told me she believed we had received an excellent education in NE--this puzzled me until I came out here and saw the schools here with my own eyes.  While it is true that in NYC there is a lot of warehousing of students...which is where much public education has ended up...the Midwest routinely does well with turning out teachers for one, and also these are the states that have the highest rates of graduation.  Someone needs to figure out why this is (I believe it is because they do take their public contracts seriously).

      Gatto believes that many students should be turned toward apprenticeships, which in part I now have a tendency to believe may have validity.  But this cannot be the only answer, either, unless we want to have a more or less permanent underclass of people.  The voucher idea is just stupid--unless you are a bright--or idiot (it will not make a difference)--child of elites.

      I see a lot of disengagement in students and thank God, frankly, I am not teaching.  But I believe this is caused by a number of factors--not a small part of which, in the very interesting case of my boyfriend's sons--is video game obsession and cultural dumbing down.

      1. Nickny79 profile image88
        Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

        I don't expect you to provide any citations (although you are welcome to), but don't pretend unsupported factual assertions make for substantive arguments.

  34. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Yah, Nick-
    Give it up with the citation stuff--I understand how that is important.  You are not talking to some rank beginner high school student.  Give others at least some credit, pls, my God....  I understand it very important when writing a thesis or a book (albeit for young adults) which is now in the Yale Law Library.  This info. was from a creditable source (only ones I read)--either trust me on that or leave it, cuz I don't feel like digging it up right now....

    And any reason why you are typing in bold letters, lol?

    Public privatized charter schools and private schools here--stupid schools like Miss Deasy's School for Technical Advancement in downtown store fronts.  2007 measurement.  I will not give you the community name as I need to protect at least that for privacy's sake.

    While I agree that it takes parents, my boyfriend and I are both relatively high achieving types who did well in school, ie, who do care about this stuff.  It isn't always THE Parents, either.  I say it takes parents, teachers, the village AND a rational government.

    What you do is substitute small tricky matters of 'fact' for the meat of debate and also use old tired right wing propaganda in place for substantial discussion which will not save the conservative party, my friend (lol).  Might work in winning small tenant landlord disputes but not as a mode of dialectic.

    Why are you so freaked and down on public schools?  What was your teaching experience like?

    1. Nickny79 profile image88
      Nickny79posted 8 years ago in reply to this

      I taught in a comparatively affluent suburb in New Jersey.  In general, I enjoyed my students and did my best to keep them engaged.  One particular exercise my students really enjoyed was a Roman Senate similation.  Each student was a Roman senator and the class was divided up into four factions which represented different interests on the political spectrum (e.g. Imperialists, Populists, Plutocrats, Aristocrats).  The students nominated and elected magistrates, and voted on legislation in order to address historically authentic issues faced by the Roman Republic.  During the process individual factions accumulated or lost influence points ("auctoritas") which fluctuated according to election results and the type of legislation enacted.  Often I would present students with ethical dilemmas:  i.e. voting for what was best for their faction as opposed to the Republic as a whole.  I was careful to show that each perspective had a dark side, be it left, right, or center.  Most of the students took the exercise very seriously, and I commonly would hear about students discussing the simulation after class or during other classes, constructing strategies for their next session.  Sometimes tempers would flares.

      During the process students learned about the Roman political system, Roman culture and history, and the ethical dilemmas faced by politicians generally.  It was also an opportunity to learn Latin vocabulary. 

      I also made a point of bringing my students to Europe every year to see ancient sites.  I entered a school with three Latin classes and left a school that had six.  I transformed a school of bricks in school of marble, so to speak.

      The school was decent school but by no mean representative of the typical public school on the East coast.  Generally speaking, private schools (whether religious or non-denominational) have more discipline and make more efficient use of funds.   It never ceased to amaze me how my students had no concept of grammar, scarcely any recognition figures like Julius Caesar or Alexander the Great, hardly any exposure to Shakespeare, etc.  More and more curricula are being engineered to promote a politically correct agenda at the expense of basic fundamentals like English grammar, Western Civ and literature, and good old fashioned disciplined.  I refuse to participate in such an enterprise, and one day I intend to do something about it...

      1. Sufidreamer profile image81
        Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        That does sound interesting - the tortuous Roman political system! smile

        1. 0
          Leta Sposted 8 years ago in reply to this

          Hi, Sufi-
          Any imput as far as the evil socialist British school system?  smile

  35. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Nick-
    OK, first real stuff I've heard from you.  While I don't disagree that private schools are often better (I think the Obamas would agree with your there) you must see it is a question of mathematics--not every deserving student can go to a private school (not to mention I believe it is a human right for all to receive an adequate basic education). 

    Plus, the affluent east coast is different from podunkaville, AZ where private schools can be set up by anyone who decides they want to (I worked with a woman at a newspaper here who did not even go to college who was teaching under the auspices of another woman's teaching certificate in a publically subsidized private school).  There are many really stupid, stupid private schools here, I kid you not.  And I'm equally disenchanted with the public schools, in this an extremely red state.

    I agree that discipline in students is sadly lacking and the curriculum is getting more and more stupid (however, I don't see liberal left wing agenda, I just see stupid).  My personal belief is that high school teachers are too 'regulated' and that is  essentially is a call to mediocrity.  This is why those serious about their subject matter, for one, are always more interested in teaching college. Paying teachers more, and cutting out all the stupid standardized tests they have to pass in order to teach would do much for raising the bar for everyone concerned.

    I do not even know where to begin w/ my boyfriend's sons-- Routinely disciplined by their literate, artistic father, intelligent kids, but who are prone to A+ mixed with F's equaling F's and whose only real interest seem to be video games.

    1. kerryg profile image86
      kerrygposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Oh man, do I hear you! My nephew is living with us to learn English and it's the same situation. We don't have any video games, so that's not the issue, but getting him to read anything besides comic books is like pulling teeth. He loves it when he actually does it (so color me baffled why it's so hard to get him to start), but reads probably 1/10 or less the number of books I read at his age just because he has to be essentially ordered to read, while my parents probably spent whole days without ever getting a clear look at my face!

      His grades are dreadful, too. Or were. For awhile there I thought he was going to be grounded until college, but once we started making him copy out 5 or 10 pages a day from the dictionary and having his teacher make him redo any work that he forgot at home from scratch during recess, he pulled himself together a bit more and averages about a B now, generally.

      Surprisingly enough wink I agree with you about the stupidity of vouchers, but I am open to a system more like the Amish have - where everybody is expected to make it to 8th grade and have the 3 Rs down, but the non-academically inclined are then free to pursue quality apprenticeships. Obviously, I'd like much better support for those who ARE academically inclined than the Amish provide, however, since they excommunicate anyone who wants to go to college!

      It's a difficult question all the way around, because universal education is pretty obviously failing us in its current incarnation, but I'm also not eager to return to the situation that prevailed in the past (and still does in many parts of the world) where the rich got educated and the poor didn't, or poor parents chose one child (usually a son tongue ) to get a good education and left the rest at home, regardless of their wishes and sometimes even abilities.

      Better parental engagement would help a lot, but it's not something you can force, and the number of dumbsh*t parents in the world never ceases to astonish me. When I was fresh out of college, I did tutoring for gifted but at-risk kids and it was painfully obvious which ones were going to do something with their lives and which were going to rot in the slums. With only one exception it was because of the parents. Some showed up for conferences with opinions and requests and even orders - their kids had straight As and ambitions; others could barely be reached and managed a "do whatever" at best - their kids talked instead of working and missed sessions and were general pains in my neck. I still think about the exception sometimes, who got kicked out of the house by her mother over the summer and started the year with a 0.7 GPA. She pulled it up to nearly 3 by the end of the year on sheer strength of will. She never would accept any help from me, just sat in the corner and did her homework like it was going out of style. I hope she made it out.

  36. Sufidreamer profile image81
    Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago

    Hi Lita,

    Hope that you had a great holiday.

    Interesting debate on here - my internet has been down over Christmas, so I have been a little quiet.

    The British School System:

    The vast majority of schools are government funded and, generally, the system has worked well so far. I received a top quality education, so I cannot complain. It is suffering some problems now, and they appear to be very similar to the flaws in the US system. Education is becoming homogenised, and individuality is increasingly frowned upon.

    My sister is an art teacher, and hates the 'one size fits all' curriculum. Art is supposed to be about creativity, but she is told what to teach and when to teach it. She also teaches in a fairly affluent area, and the kids are a complete nightmare. They have 'rich kid' syndrome and have no respect for authority. Going back to the original post, how can a teacher instill any moral code into children if they think that they are 'better' than everybody else? Private schools are worse - pupils receive a poorer education than most state schools, but meet the 'right' people, giving them a head start in life. Private schools often produce rude, ignorant and self-centred people, who tend to gravitate towards politics and business.

    In the UK, the division between state/private school is dictated largely by social class, so is probably a little different from the US model.

    The main problem seems to be that education is becoming 'dumbed down' - I think that we all agree upon that. Whether it is the government suppressing radical thoughts, or corporations seeking drones for their McJobs, I do not know. I thought about becoming a teacher once, but thought better of it! wink

  37. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    kerry-

    Yes, to all you said.  The Amish system sounds interesting--  I am only recently a convert to the idea of apprenticeships myself, when I realized their truly are some kids who would probably be better with it than a liberal education, in all reality.  Some simply don't have the ambition or desire for more education, so why force the issue?  I liked Dewey as an educational philosopher & I guess in a more 'utopic' future, I'd like to see his educational models prevail.

    Hate to blame the mother, but I think my partner's sons were not raised right--when instilling the right values was most important--at a young age.  Now I don't know.  Matt is pushing the eldest toward the army or air force so that he may acquire discipline and also skills so he can support himself in the future.  This might sound harsh--but I am glad he doesn't want him to live with us after he graduates at 18--if any kid needs to realize what real life is about, it is him.

  38. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Sufi-
    I am also a product of free secondary public education, so, unless I want to negate myself, smile--I agree with you.

    And yes, to some extent about private schools.  The wealthy in Sedona, AZ here actually got together to fund Sedona's public school (I don't know the specifics, but that is how it was done).  They have severe rich kid syndrome there and and a lot of problems with, lol, upscale drugs.  Catholic schools are well known to be good private schools--but they are always going to be a side bar here in the US, understandably.

    One of the dumbest private schools here is called American Heritage Academy--put together by a group of small town 'elite' and with a building supposedly modeled after Jefferson's Monticello.  Whenever I see their advertising with severely misspelled words, I want to die laughing.

    I was to be an art teacher, too.  Also thought better of it--no matter where I went, schools wanted me to teach English, as those teachers are always sorely needed for basic standards.  A warning call--I thought better of it, too.  My friend who is an art teacher here in a public school says the same exact things your sister says.

    Hope you had a merry Christmas there in your adopted country, smile

  39. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Nick-
    You sound better as a lawyer.  I guess when you really study something and read across the board what mostly all serious people would consider valid and creditable sources (unlike tired right wing propaganda on this, that or the other), you are fine...  Which is my point--and I rest my case.

    If you really like arguing with somebody for arguments sake, with throat slashing and all that blood-thirsty exciting material--  You should seek out MK, lol--I think you know who that is? smile

  40. Scott Mandrake profile image61
    Scott Mandrakeposted 8 years ago

    I have run into this problem many times.  You are operating solely with the nomenclature you have been programed to use and thus lose scope of the full meaning of my statements.

    Just because we use the words right and wrong in our nomenclature, does not mean that something is right or wrong.  The true right and wrong is beyond our comprehension and our use of this terminology is an exercise in either ego or ignorance. 

    Our morals change and adapt, as do our laws.  They vary from region to region, and are always subject to revision.  This inconsistency is evidence that our version of right and wrong are a matter of perspective and can not be assumed to be absolute.  As such, we can not define absolutely right and wrong with our current level of understanding therefore would be in err to teach right and wrong. 

    Instead, we must go the path of wisdom and teach in acceptable and unacceptable. 

    "The accepted interpretation of "intent to cause death" is "express malice" accompanied by "premeditation and deliberation."  This sounds in morality, not "acceptability."  The courts use these elements to distinguish murder in the 2nd degree from Voluntary Manslaughter which is a more impulsive, "heat of passion" killing.  The [distinction] is made [because] someone who commits Voluntary Manslaughter is deemed  less culpable than someone who commits murder in the second degree.  NEITHER crime however is considered "acceptable," and the last time I checked this is a pretty universal valuation."

    Currently there is a Canadian citizen sentenced to death by public beheading in Saudi Arabia.  He was involved in a brawl involving a small group of people.  A participant in this brawl received mortal internal injuries after being pinned under a fence, and died shortly thereafter.  The universal valuation in Saudi Arabia is that this Canadian boy shall have his head cut off in public for being involved in the accidental death of another.  Is this right?  By universal valuation here, no.  Here we would call this execution murder as we do not participate in capital punishment.

    If you are a religious person, right and wrong is subject to the will of the church.  Thou shalt not kill was the law, yet millions of murders took place during any number of crusades and was deemed acceptable.  I'm pretty sure Hitler thought he was on the right track too, though many a Jew would care to disagree.  What you seem to fail to understand is that right and wrong is universally undefinable.  The problem we have is vocabulary.


    You lack scope young jedi.

    Scott

  41. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    smile, smile, Just to lighten the mood, as it is Christmastime (and I hope you all take it in that light), in this conversation, we have:

    Yoda:  Perfect they are not, issues they have, like the rest of us...but how boring it would be if life was simple! smile

    Han Solo:  You lack scope young jedi.

    Darth Vader:  Some egos enjoy being in power and being right; other egos apparently enjoy being self-righteous. Each plays his part in the drama of existence.
    (Sorry, Nick, lol, but I think we are all hoping you turn out to be more like young Luke Skywalker)

    ....And I guess that leaves me with the princess Leia routine (Leia/Lita--OK, I can see it--although I always hated her hair!)

    1. Sufidreamer profile image81
      Sufidreamerposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      lol.....I have been called Chewbacca on more than a few occasions! smile



      Great, thanks. I drank too much whisky but had a great time. Hope that you had a good one too! smile

  42. Nickny79 profile image88
    Nickny79posted 8 years ago

    I have run into this problem many times. You are operating solely with the nomenclature you have been programed to use and thus lose scope of the full meaning of my statements.

    Your rhetoric implies that somehow you, having studied philosophy, are immune from society's programming.  Someone with intellectual integrity would admit this is patently false.

    Just because we use the words right and wrong in our nomenclature, does not mean that something is right or wrong.

    The sentence suggests that because one SOMETIMES misapplies the predicates "right" and "wrong" to certain objects, one can NEVER intelligibly apply the the predicates "right" and "wrong" to anything at all.  This is an unsound statement.  It's like saying that because a certain percentage of the population is color-blind, and another percentage disagrees about shades, it doesn't make sense to identify colors at all, or teach people the difference between red and green.  So also, because certain people (and peoples) cannot intuit certain moral norms because of some defect of character, and certain other people disagree about scope and application of moral norms because of imperfect understanding, it doesn't make sense, therefore, to identify moral norms AT ALL and teach them or enforce them.  No, according to you, there is only acceptable and unacceptable behavior--a mere contingency of society and its programming!  You make it sound all very democratic too--as if somehow society, of its own accord, comes to some harmonious consensus! but you are really making a disguised "might makes right" argument--namely, what people are compelled or brain washed to accept as right and wrong IS right and wrong.

    The true right and wrong is beyond our comprehension and our use of this terminology is an exercise in either ego or ignorance. Our morals change and adapt, as do our laws. They vary from region to region, and are always subject to revision

    Your skepticism here is ill-founded and if it were actually applied in practice, society would be paralyzed and people would not be able to function.  It is well to play epistomological games in the classroom; however, in the world of action, the games need to be put aside, decisions need to be made, justice needs to be meted out (even if, at times, imperfectly or incorrectly).  Arguably EVERYTHING is beyond our comprehension if by "comprehension" you mean a PERFECT MATHEMATICAL certainty.  The skeptic argues:  "Unless we have a perfect mathematical certainty about right and wrong, moral concepts are unintellgible and should be taken out of the dictionaries" (as well as the hearts and minds of our children).  "Let each individual create his own norms as he sees fit! and try to get others to 'accept it'!"
    Where do you draw the line between what is knowable and what is unknowable?   Although this sort of question should be asked, we should not be SO paralyzed by the QUESTION that we overturn every social convention and societal norm--just because we don't have a mathematically certain answer.  Most normal human beings, BY NATURE, can intuit what is right and wrong.   These norms admittedly are colored and varied over time and through culture--sometimes they are WARPED by propaganda (e.g. Nazism) and religious extremism (e.g. Islamic extremism)--however, most people would ACCEPT (and rightly so) that human beings can ascertain in an approximate way what right and wrong is.  Most people ACCEPT (and rightly so) that human beings do well to teach right and wrong, and to enforce right and wrong against those who deviate too far.
     

    Right and wrong is not determined by a popular voted, however; that is why our Founding Fathers, in their wisdom, designed a constitutional democracy where certain inherent, fundamental rights are protected against societal whims, demagogues and deviants.  We call these rights "fundamental" because they are inaleinable and God-given (or if you prefer, exist BY NATURE) according to our Founders.  They are not mere human laws that are to be accepted or unaccepted. It is true that there is some degree of disagreement in our society about the scope and application of these fundamental rights, but the disagreement is not so hopelessly tangled that we must scrap the whole concept of fundamental rights altogether, and take a popular vote every four years about whether Life, Liberty, and Human Dignity are "unacceptable" or "acceptable."

    This inconsistency is evidence that our version of right and wrong are a matter of perspective and can not be assumed to be absolute.

    The cultural inconsistency is not evidence [not to mention mathematical proof] that right and wrong are a matter of perspective subject to random societal contingencies; most "inconsistencies" are better characterized a "variations on a common theme", but ultimately these variations trace themselves back to common ground--a common ground that perhaps cannot be ascertained with mathematical certainty, but certain enough to enforce, teach, and utilize for ordering a society that respects human dignity. These moral norms are certain enough for us intuit the REAL LIFE diference between those who demonstrate a degree of humanity and those who do not.

    As such, we can not define absolutely right and wrong with our current level of understanding therefore would be in err to teach right and wrong.

      Again, it doesn't follow that because we do not have perfect, mathematical certainty about something we cannot teach it and order our lives accordingly.  WE DO THIS ALL THE TIME IN EVERY ART AND SCIENCE including so-called "hard sciences"!

    "Instead, we must go the path of wisdom and teach in acceptable and unacceptable" and "an exercise in either ego or ignorance."

    Your rhetoric unwittingly falls short of the VERY standard you set for ascertaining moral norms.  If we cannot ascertain right and wrong, how do we distinguish between similar abstractions like wisdom and ignorance, ego and egolessness.  Properly speaking, even you are approximating what it means to follow the path of wisdom....Or do you purport to have a mathematical formula for us to UNDEVIATINGLY follow this alleged "path of wisdom."  Please do share, I will be the first to apply it.

    "The accepted interpretation of "intent to cause death" is "express malice" accompanied by "premeditation and deliberation." This sounds in morality, not "acceptability." The courts use these elements to distinguish murder in the 2nd degree from Voluntary Manslaughter which is a more impulsive, "heat of passion" killing. The [distinction] is made [because] someone who commits Voluntary Manslaughter is deemed less culpable than someone who commits murder in the second degree. NEITHER crime however is considered "acceptable," and the last time I checked this is a pretty universal valuation."

    Currently there is a Canadian citizen sentenced to death by public beheading in Saudi Arabia. He was involved in a brawl involving a small group of people. A participant in this brawl received mortal internal injuries after being pinned under a fence, and died shortly thereafter. The universal valuation in Saudi Arabia is that this Canadian boy shall have his head cut off in public for being involved in the accidental death of another. Is this right? By universal valuation here, no. Here we would call this execution murder as we do not participate in capital punishment.

    Your example of religious extremism, all too common in the Islamic world, only proves that there depraved people who wantonly disregard moral norms, humanity dignity and humanity generally.  A normative conception of right and wrong acknowledges there are EXCEPTIONS to the norm.  These exceptions do not however, refute the norm, they serve as a stark contrast.

    If you are a religious person, right and wrong is subject to the will of the church.

    Are you absolutely, mathematically certain this is true? Mabye you can even prove this beyond a reasonable doubt?  How about by a preponderance of the evidence?  Perhaps right and wrong is subject to the Will of God? If you can't demonstrate the truth of that proposition with mathematical certainty, would the "path of wisdom" allow for such utterances?

    Thou shalt not kill was the law, yet millions of murders took place during any number of crusades and was deemed acceptable.  I'm pretty sure Hitler thought he was on the right track too, though many a Jew would care to disagree.

    Again deviations from the norm, do not disprove the existence of a norm that can be approximated and/or intuited by society. Once again invoking a "might makes right argument",  your line of thinking taken to its furthest conclusion, is a worrying DENIAL of human dignity.

    What you seem to fail to understand is that right and wrong is universally undefinable. The problem we have is vocabulary.

    You lack scope young jedi.

    "When I see a youth engaged in philosophical dialogue-the study appears to me to be in character, and becoming a man of liberal education, and him who neglects philosophy I regard as an inferior man, who will never aspire to anything great or noble. But if I see him continuing the study in later life, and not leaving off, I should like to beat him, Socrates; for, as I was saying, such a one, even though he have good natural parts, becomes effeminate. He flies from the Agora and the market-place, in which, as the poet says, men become distinguished; he creeps into a corner for the rest of his life, and whispers with three or four admiring boys, but never speaks out like a freeman in way that truly matters."--A Not So Young Athenian

  43. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    Sufi--  You know, it must be your hair.  Blonde Chewie?  OK, you get the part.

    Nick--  Feel the force, Luke--let it guide you...  All those words--you lose sight of humans and norms on the page in front of you.

    Hey!  I'm using "cocky comedy" on you, aren't I? lol, I'm a female and that's just wrong, tho, isn't it?

    Scott-- I think he just called you a dirty 'ol man who likes young boys.  !!!  Han Solo wouldn't stand for it, and neither should you.

    LOL  Sorry!  smile

    1. SparklingJewel profile image67
      SparklingJewelposted 8 years ago in reply to this

      Lita, what did Leia say...what's your line??!!big_smile Its been years since I watched those movies with my kids and I can't remember any of her lines! Only that she was a "saucey" young female activist, whose cocky-ness was never over the top!

      1. 0
        Leta Sposted 8 years ago in reply to this

        Jewel-
        Naw, she didn't have any good lines, just bad hair.  That is why I was reluctant to take the role...sad  Though later it was found out that Leia was actually Luke's sister (this Luke might be interested that my actual name in Latin means light??, lol) and then she runs off with Han Solo as I remember, which will not happen here (sorry, Scott, nothing personal).

  44. Scott Mandrake profile image61
    Scott Mandrakeposted 8 years ago

    I can't decipher whether I'm being called a skeptic or a fool.  However, let us put some context to my contributions here as nickny79 has brought up some very interesting points.  This might be construed as a defense however I like to view it as enlightenment.

    "Your rhetoric implies that somehow you, having studied philosophy, are immune from society's programming.  Someone with intellectual integrity would admit this is patently false"

    I fail to see the implication I have made.  Having taken such a defensive stand point on the validity of law (in terms of right and wrong) I can see how you might think of me as trying to take some sort of high ground.  I am no guru, but I have seen my fair share of narrow mindedness and if in some part I may alleviate such lack of scope, I will have considered my efforts here a worthy past time. Not too mention I find your observation of my writings to be somewhat flattering smile  I am far from immune to society's programming, though an addict can be aware of his addiction while being unable to help themselves.

    "Where do you draw the line between what is knowable and what is unknowable?   Although this sort of question should be asked, we should not be SO paralyzed by the QUESTION that we overturn every social convention and societal norm--just because we don't have a mathematically certain answer"

    I refuse to believe that someone as educated as you seem can possibly believe that 1+1 will always equal 2.  Further more, at no point did I recommend or suggest that all come to a halt until we can answer "the question".  Thousands of years of philosophy has not stopped us yet smile 

    "Right and wrong is not determined by a popular voted, however; that is why our Founding Fathers, in their wisdom, designed a constitutional democracy where certain inherent, fundamental rights are protected against societal whims, demagogues and deviants.  We call these rights "fundamental" because they are inaleinable and God-given (or if you prefer, exist BY NATURE) according to our Founders."

    Patriot act. Enough said.

    "If we cannot ascertain right and wrong, how do we distinguish between similar abstractions like wisdom and ignorance, ego and egolessness.  Properly speaking, even you are approximating what it means to follow the path of wisdom....Or do you purport to have a mathematical formula for us to [UNDEVIATING] follow this alleged "path of wisdom."  Please do share, I will be the first to apply it."

    You are keen in pointing out the paradox of distinguishing between similar abstractions.  Being subject to social programming I currently lack the means to enlighten anyone on this anomaly. As for the path of wisdom, I have no math, no science to help you sleep at night.  No formula beyond understanding that closing one's mind to possibilities has proven to show a lack of wisdom.  Wisdom being knowledge, understanding, experience, discretion, and intuitive understanding, along with a capacity to apply these qualities well towards finding solutions to problems.  This is the vernacular we have to work with.  Understanding isn't as cut and dry as you seem to make it out. 

    That being said, it would seem wise to include some level of philosophy with our moral teachings.  An absolute cut and dry version of right and wrong would be much too static and thus not in keeping with the ever fluctuating social norm.

    "When I see a youth engaged in philosophical dialogue-the study appears to me to be in character, and becoming a man of liberal education, and him who neglects philosophy I regard as an inferior man, who will never aspire to anything great or noble" 

    I can only take this and the remainder of the statement from whence it was edited as advice.  To be heeded as a warning.  If you directed this quote to me under some other pretense as Lita has suggested, I can only smile and take what I will from it rather that what is given.

    Scott

  45. 0
    Leta Sposted 8 years ago

    I sense the force is strong in you, Scott.  smile

  46. Kpb38 profile image59
    Kpb38posted 8 years ago

    I remember when I was a kid and we were taught "right" from "wrong" in school.  It was a different time, and if a strange woman in the grocery store told you to stop shoving your little brother, you listened to her.  Now everyone is restrained by the notion they have to be politically correct.  And teachers are afraid of being sued by parents. 

    I still think there are certain "right" things that should be taught in school.  I don't think it's okay for students to use R-rated language and comments when they are under 18.  The school should at least keep standards as high as a movie theater.  sigh. 

    And I think schools should teach that there are morally right behaviors and morally wrong ones.  Parents should and do teach in the homes -- but sometimes that isn't enough.  The schools have these kids for more hours per day than their parents, and they should have the right to expect them to behave themselves doing those school hours.

 
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