Peter Holmes wrote: ↑
Mon Dec 31, 2018 12:06 pm
Logik, I'm trying to clarify and generalise the structure of your argument, and I don't think I've got it yet. Is it something like the following?
1 What we call factual assertions (about features of reality) are both true and false, depending on perspective, context and conventions.
2 What we've called 'facts' (true factual assertions) are matters of opinion. Facts are relative to perspective, and so on. And there is no perspective-free perspective from which to assess the truth-value of an assertion.
3 What we've called 'objectivity' (reliance on facts) is an illusion - as, therefore, is the distinction between what we've called objectivity and subjectivity. In effect, all there can be is opinions.
4 We can call any assertion a fact, including a moral assertion, so moral discourse can be as objective as any other.
5 All the above assertions are both true and false, as is this one, depending on perspective, and so on.
Let me try another approach.
We have the following two positions/perspectives:
A Heliocentrist claims "The Earth orbits around the Sun" is the way things are. Given his perspective - he speaks truth.
A Baryocentrists claims "The Earth does not orbit the Sun." is the way things are. Given his perspective - he speaks truth also.
Both of the above are factual claims and yet they contradict each other!
This is a problem, don't you think?
For even if we were able to arrive at moral claims from facts we could find ourself in the exact same predicament:
One person claims "Murder is wrong". Given his perspective - he speaks truth.
Another claims "Murder is right". Giveh his perspective - he speaks truth also.
Even IF their claims were factual and therefore objective (according to your conception/convention) you have missed the forrest for the trees! And so we would end up exactly where we are now!
Ask yourself this question: Why do we strive for (want? desire? insist on?) objective rather than subjective morality? What problem are we trying to solve?
Is it so that we can satisfy our foundational desire for firm groundig of morality?
Is it precisely because "Murder is right sometimes" seems like a ludicrous sentiment?
Is it this deep desire that we should clearly and trivially be able to determine right and wrong?
At a a first glance basing morality on facts seem like a promising strategy for solving the foundational dillema.
Reality seems like stable grounding, right? So if we can build our notion of morality on top of reality then bingo!
Problem solved. Murder is right or wrong, but never both!
Foundationalism is indefensible. Humans exist in a relativistic and ever-changing world. Sorry.
If you want objectivity and morality - we have to overcome relativism and invent it! Exactly like we have invented scientific "objectivity". Pragmatic necessity.
Exactly like objective scientific truth a product of scientific consensus, so is objective morality a product of social consensus.
Scientists agree that water boils at temperature X. Therefore the boiling point of water becomes objective fact.
Humans agree that murder is wrong. Therefore the wrongness of murder becomes objective fact.