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Every race or ethnic group has it's own values and characteristic behaviors. No group's values are any better or any worse than any other's and criticism of another's ideas and actions is wrong.

Cultural Relativity

the ingredients of a culture reflect the background and development and natural habitat of that culture.

Yes, think of racism and sexism. Many long standing groups embrace these.

Is it possible for a custom to be long standing, consistent with other group behaviors and still immoral?

1) Different ways of viewing the same value; 2) Belief that a higher value takes precedence, including relgious beliefs or taboos; 3) Value considered not applicable to the victim

Differences in values exist, so they are attributable to...?

1) Cultures are dynamic; 2) Technology has revolutionized values; 3) People are fallible

3 Appropriate Moral Judgment Points

1) Knowledge of the issue is not the same as knowledge of the moral quality of the action. 2) Time and place have no bearing on the moral quality of the action. 3) Culpability for immoral acts may vary widely from no moral responsibility to an extreme level.

3 Moral Judgment Cautions

Morally no, legally yes

Is ignorance viewed as being morally responsible?


Is being forced to do something viewed as being morally responsible?

Something so bad that cannot be renationalized

Crime Against Humanity


Leaving details out

Hasty Conclusion

To jump to answer too quickly

Unwarranted assumption

To believe something without legitimate proof

Double Standard

Using different criteria in similar situations to meet one's own needs

Appeal to Common Practice

Action is moral because everyone does it

Appear to Tradition

Any action is moral because of one's own customs

Appeal to Conscience

A belief that you believe strongly enough that makes it so


The degree of a person's moral responsibility of one's actions

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