Andrey (azangru) wrote,

Moral is another word that is giving me troubles, because of how important it seems to be in the American public speech, and yet how elusive in meaning. When I hear the word moral, I think of ethics, but then there are different ethics, and it's not like any one system has been accepted as definitive.

So this exchange, for example, while repugnant because of how the CIA lady is repeatedly not answering the question, is also confusing because of how the senator uses the word immoral:

"Do you believe that previous interrogation techniques were immoral?" she asks. To which an answer could easily be: of course they were. Because, even "enhanced interrogation techniques" aside, can an interrogation, when a subject is held in custody against his will, and then questioned, i.e. put in a position when there is a glaring imbalance of power between himself and the questioner — can an interrogation ever be moral?

A somewhat similar situation occurred at Dave Rubin's speech at the University of New Hampshire (a weird event, but worth watching to see student protests in action). Rubin said that the Supreme Court does not recognize "hate speech", and a student was asking him, why, since the Supreme Court made some decisions that he, the student, considers harmful for the black community, why bring the Supreme Court up as a moral standard (link). To which an answer might have been — why does the Supreme Court have to be a moral standard? Isn't being a legal standard no longer enough?

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