Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Tolerance, Moral Responsibility, Refugees


. First, disconnect rights from responsibility (obligation).

The idea that every right has a corresponding duty or obligation was essential to the social compact understanding of the American founding. Thus whatever was destructive of the public good or public happiness, however much it might have contributed to an individual’s private pleasures or imagined pleasures, was not a part of the “pursuit of happiness” and could be proscribed by society. Liberty was understood to be rational liberty, and the pursuit of happiness was understood to be the rational pursuit of happiness—that is to say, not only a natural right but a moral obligation as well.

When there are no morals, "tolerance" -- allowing relativism becomes the only "moral".

Over the past century and more, this morality grounded in the American founding has been successfully eroded by Progressivism. This erosion is manifested today in the morality of value-free relativism. According to this new morality, all value judgments are equal. Reason cannot prove that one value is superior to or more beneficial than another, because values are not capable of rational analysis; they are merely idiosyncratic preferences. In this value-free universe, the only value that is “objectively” of higher rank is tolerance. Equal toleration of all values—what is called today a commitment to diversity—is the only “reasonable” position. And note that it is always called a commitment to diversity. It is a commitment because it cannot be rational in any strict sense—it exists in a value-free world from which reason has been expelled. The only support it can garner under such circumstances is the simple fact that it is preferred.

Values precede reason. They either exist in the fabric of an ordered universe,  or they do not. If they exist, they transcend existence. If they do not exist, then might is right.

The article proceeds to argue that it is obvious that the admission of Syrian refugees is neither a moral or a Constitutional issue in a world with values. I agree -- self defense is a basic human right. Unless refugees, especially Islamic refugees can be properly vetted, there is not obligation to accept them.

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