• Abortion,  Ethics,  Logic

    A Silly Pro-Abort Argument

    Having ‘moral status’ equates to being the kind of thing it is wrong to kill. According to Elizabeth Harman, if a woman decides to have an abortion, then the fetus does not have moral status. If the mother decides not to have an abortion, then, due to the future life of that fetus, the fetus has moral status. I have moral status. If my mother had decided to abort me, then I would not have had moral status. When I was a fetus, my mother decided not to abort me and, in virtue of that fact, I had a future life. Consequently, I had, and still have, moral status. This…

  • Ethics

    Fighting for Life

    “Bodily life, which we receive without any action on our own part, carries within itself the right to its own preservation. This is not a right that we have justly or unjustly appropriated to ourselves, but it is in the strictest sense an “innate” right, one which we have passively received and which preexists our will, a right which rests upon the nature of things as they are. Since it is God’s will that there should be a human life on earth only in the form of bodily life, it follows that it is for the sake of the whole man that the body possesses the right to be preserved.…

  • Ethics

    Why Charlie Should Have Been Permitted a Shot at Life: A Reply to Ian Kennedy

    Ian Kennedy argues that we are wrong to criticize the court’s decision to prevent the parents of Charlie Gard to travel to America to seek treatment not available in the UK. He cites a case in which parents of a sick child in Aukland, New Zealand had declined treatment for their sick child. The court stepped and ordered that the child be deemed a ward of the court and was treated. The child lived. Kennedy uses this case to argue that sometimes it is right for a court to step in a rule against the wishes of parents. Here is his argument:  These are the steps. The first is to…

  • Bible,  Ethics,  Logic,  Sexuality

    What’s Wrong With Mind-Reading Arguments

    Consider Fred. Fred hates cars. But Fred hates cars in 1946. We don’t know why he hates cars and perhaps he might like modern cars. We can speculate all we like, but we can’t say for sure that Fred would like modern cars. We can’t say, “Well, when Fred hated cars in 1946, cars were very different. Fred didn’t even know about modern cars. Therefore, Fred would not hate cars in 2017.” The reason we can’t make the conclusion is because no kind of car was specified as the subject of Fred’s scorn. Indeed, it is highly likely that Fred hated all species of cars not because he hated every…

  • Bible,  Christian Life,  Ethics

    Psalm 73: Why No One Will Ever ‘Get Away With It’

    From the fall of 1997 to the following summer, I lived in a YMCA in London (the one in the picture). My band and I were given residency in part to help influence other residents. This YMCA was packed full of people struggling with life. My next door neighbor was a drug addict and an anorexic – she could only walk down the hall by leaning against the wall. Many of the residents struggled with mental health issues. One man believed that he was the actor who played Darth Vader in Star Wars. He had forged an entire collection of letters and pictures to prove it! While many we lived…

  • Christian Life,  Culture,  Ethics

    Without Distinction

    The problem with the Pharasees was not that they were a bunch of goody-two-shoes. They weren’t merely legalists, obsessed with minutiae. Rather, they were desperate people-pleasers. John tells us that the Pharisees “loved the approval of men rather than the approval of God” (John 12:43). What they craved was distinction. Most of us crave some sort of approval from the people around us. JFK wanted it and knew that Harvard would give it to him if he could get in. So, in his entrance essay he wrote, “To be a ‘Harvard man’ is an enviable distinction, and one that I sincerely hope I shall attain.” Ironically, some years before, the…

  • Anthropology,  Creation,  Ethics,  Politics,  Science

    Scrapping Over Crime: How Assumptions About Human Nature Explain Political Divisions

    In clear-cut cases of crime, terror, and other instances of wicked human behavior, you’d think we’d all be on the same page. But we’re not. We argue over it, especially if we talk politics. It seems we can all call something bad, but when we talk about what we or the government should do about it, we can’t agree. Why not? The answer is fairly simple and comes down to our views of human nature. In other words, the argument is not primarily political but a question of worldview.  Consider any event in which a person has done some immoral action. Now, consider why the action was taken. What is…

  • Ethics,  Politics

    Cultural Appropriation: Problem?

    I am a Brit living in America. My favorite restaurant is Cracker Barrel, I display a large star spangled banner in my study, and occasionally practice my ‘mercan accent (much to the embarrassment of my wife). I am constantly appropriating a culture not of my own. But then I’ve been doing it for years. In my teens, my guitar heroes included black blues players like Albert King and John Lee Hooker. And I’m not alone: Eric Clapton, John Mayall, Gary Moore, and a host of other white Brits spent hours appropriating the sound, look and psychology of the poor black man from the delta. So, are we doing something wrong?…