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Reply: After reading your classmates’ threads, choose one to which you will respond, then write a reply that interacts with your classmate’s thread and presents a well-reasoned alternative to his or her approach to the issue. You do not have to defend a position that is diametrically opposed to your classmate’s position, but you do need to either defend a position that is significantly different than his/hers or defend the same position in a very different way. If possible, you must reply to a classmate to whom no one else has yet replied. Treat your classmate’s opinion with sensitivity and respect.

Your reply must be 500 words. You will be penalized for falling short or exceeding the word count. Any quotes or information used from sources other than yourself (including your classmate’s thread) ***8must be cited using footnotes in current Turabian format***** and will not count towards the total word count.

**Student 1 Pam**

What is ethical relativism? Essentially, ethical relativism is the idea that people can have varying opinions or beliefs on what they think is right and what they think is wrong based on their preferences or the preferences of the society they live in. There are two types of relativism, they are moral subjectivism and cultural relativism. Moral subjectivism states that moral judgments are based on opinions and predilections of those who are passing the judgement.

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Moral subjectivism is one’s own idea of right and wrong. Cultural relativism says that the society and culture in which you live is what sets the moral values and determines what is right and what is wrong. In my opinion, ethical relativism is false. I can see how someone or some people might argue that ethical relativism is true, and I respectfully see their argument. The world is a unique and diverse place and it does not sound illogical to think that morals are influenced by where you live and the culture in which you were brought up, or that one’s own opinion or belief on right or wrong is invalid. However, when you have different groups of people or even just individuals who have opposing sets of morals you start to create conflict, especially when it comes to delicate subjects like the ones brought up in the reading; racism, cannibalism, terrorism, or torture. If ethical relativism is true, then who is to say that these things are wrong or bad? No one, not if people set their own morals and decide what is right and what is wrong. Ethical relativism is false because we live in a world where there are ethical absolutes. There are moral principles that people around the world agree on. There are things that are right and things that are wrong, like murder, that bind us together. People, for centuries, have agreed that committing murder is wrong or immoral. That does not stop people from doing it, but it is something that is agreed upon as wrong and in almost every case is punished for being committed. In my opinion, having a binding set of morals and a clear definition of what is right and what is wrong is what helps to keep the human race in check.

***Student 2 Jack****

Although this is the first time I have actually heard the term ethical relativism this is not the first time I have pondered my own questions about this subject. After reading the chapters on this subject and digging deeper into other research my answer to the question of whether of not ethical relativism is correct would be yes, to an extent. Herodotus, a Greek historian during the 5th century helped to advance the view of ethical relativism through his observation of different cultures and societies. Based on his observations he believed that no set of social customs or morals was better or worse than the other. I also believe this to be true but to an extent. I have lived in the Midwest and the south, and the difference between those 2 cultures alone proves to me that there are no moral absolutes and the people from those areas viewed what is ethical and morally acceptable much differently. Each area though did believe that their views were correct. This experience alone for me creates the opinion that ethical relativism is correct when it pertains to the fact that there are no absolute moral truths. The caveat to my belief that ethical relativism is correct is the fact that it shouldn’t be. As human beings with the capability of advanced thought processing and the ability to connect emotions to thought and action, there should be moral absolutes across all cultures no matter what region of the globe. My opinion on that, however, is a non-point considering that this is not the case. Things that within our own culture across the entire country we find morally and ethically incomprehensible, such as murder or rape, are viewed quite differently in parts of the world. In some cases, these types of actions are a social norm and are not given a second thought. Though that culture may view these types of actions as morally acceptable, our culture views them as reprehensible and horrid. Examples such as this lead to my opinion that ethical relativism is correct in theory. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder has been used across cultures through generations and is another example of how each person can have a different view of what is right and wrong, what is acceptable and what is not, and whether or not what they believe is truly right based on social and cultural norms. “Ethical relativism”. Article by James Rachels. Accessed 8/25/2019

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