Do we have a moral responsibility to help our fellow man?

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by rodereve, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    We have a moral imperative to help our fellow man. However, the term help is often subjective as to what constitutes that help. The mother who smothers were child is helping her child in her mind. But one person's help might be seen as a problem to another. If you think tattoos are the bomb, then helping others might require you paying for a tattoo. This expense may not be considered very important to someone who does like tattoos. There is a saying if you feed someone a fish they will be hungry tomorrow but if you teach them to fish they can feed themselves forever. Helping may result in conflicting philosophy if one wants to give things and the other time.

    The bible says do onto others, as you would like them to do onto you. This accommodates individual subjectivity of giving, but says nothing about imposing any subjective standard on everyone. If the mother wishes to smother, she can give in this way but she can't force dad to do the same thing, if he thinks this is not good in the long run. He will give in his own way. Do onto others, has to do with charity and not forcing one subjective law.

    The Democrats like to give things which is a valid way to give. But instead of paying for these things with their own money, they like to impose upon others to pay, even those who don't agree with this way. Do onto others would require if they think this is good, it is up to them to pay for their own subjective choice of giving. Wouldn't that be nice if giving required putting the money where the mouth was?

    If you impose your subjectivity onto others, then you are saying I want others to impose their subjectivities onto me (do to others as you want them to do to you). That means the Republicans need to impose more on the Democrats since this is the example they set and this is what they want to happen. The poor remain poor since this is what the demcorats want when they do onto others. This helps control their base.
     
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  3. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

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    And the difference between morals and ethics is....
     
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  5. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

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    My time is limited on earth and there are 7 billion of those whom I should be cared about??? I mean seriously, this we are all the same BS.

    To answer the original question, it comes down to practicality. Generally you should care about your neighbour, because their well being could effect you. A billion people's well being 2000 miles away is another question. Now someone brought up interconnection, so sure, if they develop a disease that can be quickly transfered to my place, now I am suddenly more willing to help.

    But to people, who think that everyone should help everybody else, why don't you sell or your extra stuff, and donate it to the 3rd world, so they can have more children and more suffering? And why would you want to help people on another continent when I am sure there are plenty of suffering a few dozen miles from you?

    Does a rich Russian/Chinese/whatever guy care about a poor American sick person who doesn't have medical coverage? And why should he?

    If we would apply that everyone cares about the other, there would be a nice worldwide socialism, but what is even more, more suffering since there would be more breeding and population. Does the average Chinese live well? No. Do you know how many Chinese would we have MORE had there been no 1 child only policy? It is about 200 million I think, so that policy just saved as 190 million people's suffering. (I assume here that 5% of them would be living well.) And those who are alive are living better, because there is no extra 200 million of them...
     
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  7. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

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    I agree there are practical limitations on how much it is possible to help people. You can even help people by not helping them. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't care.
     
  8. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    24,690
    To care about someone and not be able to help them is one of the saddest feelings in life. One of my dearest friends is diligently destroying herself--emotionally, physically and financially. She's been doing it throughout her life but I only met her a few years ago and it took me a while to figure it out. She won't let anyone help--family, friends, co-workers, nobody. It makes me want to cry. I'm sixteen years older but I'll be the one to bury her.

    This is why good people, good communities and good nations often meddle in the affairs of others, even when it turns out to be a dreadful mistake. (Vietnam, anyone?) We just cannot bear to sit on the sidelines and watch them suffer.
     
  9. KitemanSA Registered Senior Member

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    Morals relates to right vs wrong, ethics relates to good vs bad. At least that is how I have chosen to distinguish them in this language that commonly defines them as each other.
     
  10. KitemanSA Registered Senior Member

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    This is because we as a nation don't understand the difference between "moral" and "ethical" and how they relate to each other.
    1. Sapient Beings have the right to voluntary action (morality).
    2. You can't do good (ethics) by doing wrong (relationship between)
    3. Like all toxic substances, Government is subject to the J curve. (special derivative relationship at mass level)
     
  11. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

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    I prefer useful and useless. But for all practical purposes, they are the same, so let's not do schemantics...

    OK, so we can close the thread by summarizing, since there is no objective morality, the answer is a no...
     
  12. KitemanSA Registered Senior Member

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    oh, but there is objective morality. See number 1 in #27.
     
  13. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    Well, you were asserting that you had to be told what to care about (the implication being that it's not possible for you to derive what you 'want' to care about) and cited outside people-influence on the development of your morals and values as support. I cited genetics as having a heavy influence on morals as you are not of the blank slate that you implied. As for discounting your "point", I am not sure if you have really made one yet to discount. All you have really asserted is that you think you need to be told what to care and not care about as of right now. Did someone tell you to care about being hungry this morning so you would eat? If they didn't would you have starved? Hopefully, it's becoming clear to you that your assertion is a little odd at least or perhaps you have not expressed it correctly.

    I can see how it could be interpreted as sarcasm; however, without knowing your writing style there would have been no way for me to know. Why even use sarcasm? It's roots are in a form of lying and your use of it didn't allow the discussion to progress.

    The topic was "gun control" and not "gun violence" so you are mis-representing the discussion (possibly a mistake or possibly a lie). Even so, whether or not to have caring emotional response towards other humans and your new goalpost of "gun violence" are different topics. Notice how they use different words/phrases and map to different meanings. Of course, you completely dodged the question given to you. Do you personally want to help people less fortunate than you?
     

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