Moral relativism tosses high standards into the ditch

Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of BizPac Review.

Many Americans wonder what went wrong, what has caused American values to be dangerously slipping toward extinction. There seems to be little common agreement these days about what is true and not true, or the difference between right and wrong. Well, pilgrim, if you are searching around for causes of what went wrong, and why we are knee-deep in nihilism and a loss of values, you can start with the problem of moral relativism (MR).

MR is a concept in which truth is ephemeral, totally subjective, where truth is what each person says it is. So you can say anything you like and then take the position that it’s truthful to you.

Relativism is part of the progressive credo to make no judgments about others (except conservatives). In progressives’ world, anything goes, there is no objective truth, and everyone’s opinions and viewpoints deserve “equal” treatment.  Leftists take the position that equality is an essential element of social justice, therefore even harmful viewpoints that erode the public good deserve equal acceptance.  For the left, right and wrong are simply opinions. Slippery, don’t you think?

Moral relativists believe there is no absolute truth, only the truths that a particular person or culture happens to believe. MRs deny that universal moral or ethical values exist that should be shared by all humans.  Different individuals can hold different views about what is moral and immoral, right or wrong.  Standards go out the window. You see, we can all decide for ourselves what is right. “It’s true for me, if I believe it.” So, if you believe in cannibalism, widow-burning, slavery, genocide, human sacrifice and female infanticide, that’s OK with the moral relativist, who refuses to recognize that some societies or cultures have better reasons to hold their views than other cultures.

Looking beyond the fact that MR undermines objective ethics, it also leads to tolerance of evil views and a refusal to condemn abhorrent worldviews–all on the basis that “every point of view is right.” So we get leftists defending radical Islam and Hamas, tolerating unacceptable behavior, abandoning western values, scorning capitalism. Bad people are viewed as good because of the group they belong to. In Denmark, there’s even a “HUG A TERRORIST” program, offering empathy to jihadists.

But in the opinion of many, MR people promote evil. Keeping that in mind, let’s get back to the problem of what went wrong in today’s world and why American values are slipping away from us. We seem to be descending into ethical chaos.

Consider the schoolteacher who teaches her students: “You are a special, unique person. Find your own truth and values. Follow your passion and your own desires. Do not judge others and what they believe.” I submit that too many children and college students are being taught this mantra, that there is no objective truth and that all points of view are valid. (Unfortunately, some universities, at the same time, are advocating a diametric and hypocritical exception:  that students should reject conservative politics and conservative speakers– but that’s a problem for another day. Many MRs don’t comprehend the irrationality of their conflicting viewpoints.)

When a young, malleable mind is told there are no absolute moral principles, that “their truth” is as valid as objective truth, this is the equivalent of a license to do whatever they want to do to show how special they are. No curbs, “anything goes”, too often becomes a countercultural way of life, especially for youths who grew up playing violent, murderous online war games, perhaps rendered emotionally calloused by hundreds of visual games where killing, blood, betrayal and violence are commonplace.

How far will this craziness go? Will Americans end up accepting anything? This is hard to prevent, other than parents must train their children right from wrong, and MR needs to be abolished from schools. We are at the proverbial crossroads, America’s hard-won greatness is in jeopardy, and our values are being threatened by multiculturalism and the ascendancy of power-hungry political socialists. Moral relativism is a common denominator for the cause of many of America’s problems. It needs to be tossed into the ditch, stamped out like a disease, and fast.

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John R. Smith

John R. Smith

John R. Smith is chairman of BIZPAC, the Business Political Action Committee of Palm Beach County, and owner of a financial services company.
John R. Smith

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