according to this model, your moral “line” is rooted in the green-labeled section of development, meaning that you perceive morality as a sort of flatness and equality, and you view immorality as anything that distiguishes one person from another in any meaningful way.
here’s where you’re going to start getting upset: my moral level is, in my estimation, making its way from yellow to turqouise. at yellow, your perception shifts radically from “equality” to “appropriateness” as the moral way to treat people regarding their differences. for example, why SHOULD two people who are NOT equally qualified be given the same opportunity? isn’t it best for the whole world if every job or college or other opening is filled with the best match, instead of equally with all kinds of people (as in affirmative action)? this attitude then applies to everything, like gender and sex. beyond that, i’m just discovering.
what makes two people equally qualified? how do you measure such a thing?
according to a metric, or by measure of accomplishment, i suppose. it all comes down to subjective interpretation on a certain scale, but objective measures of qualification do exist and are useful. men, for example, simply make better soldiers because they’re more physically adept. this is a general principle. it seems to me that there are three ways to view this: conventionally, post-conventionally, and integrated. convention would respond to this by making a law that only men can be soldiers, since the part of this equation that they see as important is the general rule. post-convention would say that anyone should be allowed to be a soldier, since the part of this equation which is important to them is individual rights and equality. an integral perspective would be that since the objective is to find the best soldiers, let people try out and compete to get the job, and whoever passes the requirements makes it in, regardless of other characteristics. this would likely result in some, but very, very few women being able to make it as soldiers, upsetting both the conventional perspective (only men) and the postconventional (everyone equally), but when you think about it, it is more fair, more just, more moral, and creates a better outcome for everyone.
this is why general principles are important: because when your moral grounding is “everything in its right place” instead of “everyone allowed to do whatever they want”, general principles simply arise. they aren’t being enforced, they aren’t unfair, they aren’t racist or sexist, they simply arise due to the differences in populations of people.
you don’t believe that people in power set measures of success and draw lines that keep others out?
armies exist because men who are physically adept/aggressive constructed the notion of an army, and carried it out. the idea of army does not exist without humans who create such a thing intentionally, as a response to their inclinations/talents.
success in society is constructed by people in power. the notion of success in an army, similarly, is constructed by people in power in the army. you are a successful soldier if you possess a certain set of characteristics. in another organization, the same characteristics would be viewed as psychopathic. there is no being “good” at one thing or another, as an absolute. what is good is defined by context. yes, one definition of a “good” army is that which you presented above. there are others who would think of such a group of people as appalling.
as for racism, sexism, etc.–it is convenient to pretend that it is easy to measure things like “intelligence” or other forms of cognitive or physiological capability. the truth is, however, that measures of such things are tenuous and unfounded. leaving women or other minorities (perhaps racial minorities) out of an opportunity because of a supposed lower capability at achieving the required tasks fails to take into account that the reason for this lower capability is centuries of institutionalized oppression that makes prostitutes and slaves out of humans, which is rather a heavy burden to bear, leaving the above human beings unsurprisingly less able (or having of less time) to worry themselves about their performance on tests, good “scores” on which only require some base measure of preparation.
when you have to contend with the challenge of SURVIVAL in a society that sees you as weak, incapable, and disgusting, you have less time to study for an IQ test, or research colleges, or buff up for some exercise that will determine whether you get into an army.
In your first two paragraphs, you ignore context. If the objective is to find a good soldier, you measure a person’s qualification according to their ability to perform a soldier’s duties. Opinions of whether or not this is a good thing to be is irrelevant.
In your 3rd paragraph, you commit the mistake that you’re projecting on to me. quote: >>leaving women or other minorities (perhaps racial minorities) out of an opportunity because of a supposed lower capability at achieving the required tasks…<< I didn’t support this practice. I advocated individual qualification. You seem to be arguing against an argument that I haven’t made, namely the one that stereotypes are a reliable measure of individual qualities.
As for the social stratification of people by demographic qualities, it’s unfortunate that ethnocentric tendencies have given some or another group power over some or another group at some or another time in history, but the position that I am forced to take on that issue is “tough cookies”. It already happened. Some people are at a disadvantage because of it too. Tough cookies. If a person doesn’t show academic performance, they shouldn’t get into college (for example). Race, class, nationality, hair color and shoe size shouldn’t have anything to do wit this decision. a rich, white male with a 1200 SAT and a 3.4 GPA should get the same exact acceptance standards applied to him as a poor, black female with a 1200 SAT and 3.4 GPA. implying that the latter’s performance is any more impressive than that of the former is truly unfair. in fact, basing distribution of favorable treatment on race, sex, or class is truly unfair. what we SHOULD be doing as a society is supplying INDIVIDUALS with the means that they need to excel. I’m going to split this up into those same three perspectives again: conventional: X group performs poorly on these tests, so they shouldn’t get into college. Postconventional: since X group has it tough, they should get a boost in college admissions. Integral: give X group the same advantages as everyone else, then their performance will determine their eligibility.
do you see how special consideration for people who underperform is a bad thing? it would be great if people didn’t have to deal with different conditions, but it’s those conditions that we should be fixing. to say that someone deserves special consideration because they grew up without any way to learn is like saying that you should use rotten and healthy wood equally to build a house, since it’s not the wood’s fault that it was subjected to conditions of rotting. the best solution is to give the trees the nutrients they need to grow strong and discard the ones that didn’t make it. the same gos with people — you put them in the conditions they need to excel and if they don’t make it, too bad.
the fact that those conditions don’t exist is the real issue here, not the results of this lack. in the same way that you can’t get rid of a weed without pulling up the root, you can’t get rid of social ills by treating their EFFECTS. you have to treat the CAUSES.
“Race, class, nationality, hair color and shoe size shouldn’t have anything to do wit this decision. a rich, white male with a 1200 SAT and a 3.4 GPA should get the same exact acceptance standards applied to him as a poor, black female with a 1200 SAT and 3.4 GPA. implying that the latter’s performance is any more impressive than that of the former is truly unfair.”
why is it unfair? do you not believe that the latter individual surmounted tougher challenges to get to the point that they did than the former?
“it would be great if people didn’t have to deal with different conditions, but it’s those conditions that we should be fixing.” we are in agreement on this point. but in the meantime, what? i dont see much fixing of conditions going on in this society.
“you can’t get rid of social ills by treating their EFFECTS. you have to treat the CAUSES.” thats like saying that if someone is sick and in pain, that you shouldnt bother treating the pain. i firmly believe that if someone is sick, treat the symptoms AND the disease. why you gotta pick? pain alleviation until the root cause is addressed is crucial in treating illness. similarly with society. a sick society that was born directly out of slavery needs much much more than addressing of the “root cause”. the root cause is enormously complicated and far more difficult to address. that doesnt mean we shouldnt work on it. but in the meantime, give the person who worked harder to get to the same place as the rich white male some credit for her work…it is easier to get a 1200 SAT and 3.4 GPA when youre parents are rich white suburban dwellers who have paid for a tutor, and the money that they earn is a direct descendant of an economic system that was centered around slavery and oppression of others. easy as fuck. if youre a white male who is rich and all you managed to get was a 1200 and a 3.4 GPA, then youre fucking lazy. if you are a poor black female who was able to do that despite almost zero institutional/parental/socioeconomic support, youre probably a genius.
“the best solution is to give the trees the nutrients they need to grow strong and discard the ones that didn’t make it.” your rhetoric sounds an awful lot like eugenics…
slavery and oppression are not “tough cookies”. they were institutionalized with purpose. this is the degraded nature of humanity. in dealing with it, an overabundance of compassion and support towards those living under the legacy of institutionalized violence and oppression is called for. not the pretense that everybody who is equal on paper is equal in circumstance.
in response by paragraph number: 1/2: it doesn’t matter who overcame what. if you know calculus, you know calculus. it’s not “worth more” to know algebra just because you were born to a poor family. Again: it’s what you can do that matters, not how you got there.
3:in the meantime we wait. people are starting to engage in real social progress. until they succeed, we have police, welfare, unemployment insurance, heavy taxation on the rich, obamacare etc etc etc to help people who got fucked by the system. it’s not enough, but it’s something and it’s getting better.
4: too much to respond to. i agree with “treating the pain”. that doesn’t translate to unfair handouts based on race or class. it should be on an individual basis. why can’t a poor white kid get an affirmative action acceptance if he came from just as shitty conditions as a poor black kid? isn’t his work just as impressive? why use race as a measure at all? or any demographic for that matter? like i said: review on individual characteristics.
5: i support eugenics. i can think of no greater purpose for the study of biology than to self-direct our evolution as a species.
6: they ARE tough cookies because it’s over. the past is unchangeable. if you keep considering what led a person or a group to their current circumstances, you’re going to have to go back forever and keep finding contexts in contexts in contexts. you have to build the future from the PRESENT. who needs help? how to we give it to them? these are the questions that need answering, not “who was mean to whom in the past?” for example, i take enormous offense to the idea that i am in some way responsible for reaping the benefits of slavery because of my race. why should i be put at a disadvantage to make up for something that happened between people who died centuries ago? you simply don’t have to take away from one group to give to another. you have to take from all people according to what’s fair based on their circumstances, pool it, and then give all new children the same fair chance at making it. implying that things should be “evened out” according to race or any other demographic is divisive and futile.
EXCUSE ME WHAT. DID HE JUST SAY HE SUPPORTS EUGENICS. EXCUSE ME WHAT.