Geoffrey Sayre-Mccord Essays On Moral Realism

Geoffrey Sayre-Mccord Essays On Moral Realism-36
Moreover, all murders would have this property even if no one contemplated the moral status of murder and even if everyone thought that murder did not have such a property.

While Ruse at least defends (4′), he says nothing about (5′), perhaps because he thinks its truth is obvious. Many philosophers, including Richard Swinburne, have argued that moral truths are For the existence of the phenomena described by analytic truths needs no explanation.

It does not need explaining that all bachelors are unmarried, or that if you add two to two you get four.

Instead, metaethical statements are statements about ethics as such, and not about problems of ethics as those problems are commonly experienced.

The major metaethical views are commonly divided into realist and anti-realist views, despite the fact that some labels, such as cognitivism, do not respect the realist/anti-realist boundary: Subjectivism, non-cognitivism, and error theory are the only forms of anti-realism: If there are no objective values, this must be either because ethical statements are subjective claims (as subjectivists maintain), because they are not genuine claims at all (as non-cognitivists maintain), or because they are mistaken objective claims.

[2] The statement, “the recognition of morality as merely a biological adaptation shows that there can be no foundation of the kind traditionally sought,” suggests that another premise for Ruse’s argument is: Start with the fact that the argument about the train goes through because and only because the existence of the train is assumed independently.

Suppose, for instance, one had two worlds identical except that one has a speeding train and the other does not.

) impartial or rational persons who considered them; the claims in question need not have an objective ontological foundation.

An epistemologically objective moral truth might have no ontological foundation at all, an objective ontological foundation (i.e., if it corresponded to natural or non-natural properties), or an intersubjective ontological foundation (i.e., if it corresponded to the moral beliefs of a group of people).

As Lillehammer notes, in order to properly understood Ruse’s argument, we need to understand how Ruse defines his terms.

It is odd, then, that Lillehammer doesn’t quote any passages from Ruse’s writings which clarify what Ruse has in mind.


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