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To: Diamond
There are moral and immoral genes?

You're still not getting it. What we call moral is what makes a society more cohesive. We already know some base actions are in our DNA, like a baby naturally going for the nipple, so its possible that higher tendencies might be passed along.

The actions of eugenicists are undesirable according to Darwin. So what? The actions of eugenicists are desirable according to eugenicists.

But the context here is an attack on Darwin because of what the eugenicists believe. I think you've about admitted such attacks are unfair without realizing it.

Is there an obligation to do "what's best for a society"?

Does religion give such an obligation?

44 posted on 03/01/2009 10:08:50 PM PST by antiRepublicrat (Sacred cows make the best hamburger.)
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To: antiRepublicrat
You're still not getting it. What we call moral is what makes a society more cohesive. We already know some base actions are in our DNA, like a baby naturally going for the nipple, so its possible that higher tendencies might be passed along.

I will let the reader judge who is missing whose point, My point, reiterated in every post here, is that what you call morality is not morality at all, but merely descriptive accounts of environmental selection of certain behaviors that tend to conserve species, which tells you nothing about why things ought to be that way. Morality is about "ought", not about what merely "is". You also can't by reason alone derive ethical principle from a mere fact of nature.

You can't appeal to "higher tendencies" without justifying the leap because under a naturalistic Darwinian premise matter in motion is all you have to work with; concatenations of atoms and molecules are not directed or purposeful, and the "higher tendencies" is what you being asked to account for in the first place. You are limited by your premise to thouroughly naturalistic explanations based on material causes.

But the context here is an attack on Darwin because of what the eugenicists believe. I think you've about admitted such attacks are unfair without realizing it.

No, here I simply accepted your premise for the sake of argument, not because I think it is entirely factual. My point is that Darwin had no foundation for any of his ethical judgments. By all accounts Darwin was personally a kindly man, but his naturalism destroys any possibility of a coherent account of morality.

.Does religion give such an obligation?

If you regard religion as man-made, i.e., having emerged along with man from the primordial slime, then no. In that case it would be just as arbitrary and subjective as your utilitarian ethic.

Cordially,

45 posted on 03/02/2009 6:17:30 AM PST by Diamond
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