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Is Objective Morality Necessarily Bigoted?

Objective morality is that things are the moral things to do regardless of who approves of them or not.

Doing the right thing is either based on opinion (subjective) or it really is the right thing (objective). The latter is what people mean by objective morality.

Many liberals argue that objective morality is bigoted and intolerant. But the alternative, moral relativism, is often guilty of similar bigotry and capable of much much worse. If objective morality is real and if it is bigoted then relativism is far more bigoted for it opposes the truth. If objective morality has leanings towards bigotry those leanings are far more pronounced with relativism. They have to be for the way to deal with the problems of objective morality is not to try and throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Do people who preach objective morality or relative morality do so because they intend to put tolerance to the fore? Indeed tolerance is not nice but it is more important to be tolerant than to love. If the moralities are all about tolerance or if they hope they are then they will not be very happiness inducing. Tolerance is hardly a source of joy. 

If morality is not objective then believers in religion are bad for saying it is. Is that a contradiction? No - good and evil can exist without morality existing. If both were balanced then no matter what you do, you will not make anything better or worse. Morality would be impossible. So they are as bad as they are good for saying it.

If there is no objective morality at all then it is not bad to say there is such a thing. A contradiction is like an attempt to accept two opposing and incompatible views. So both things are being said in this case. The believer is affirming and denying objective morality at the same time. This is half-accepting objective morality.

But it could be that the only thing that is objectively wrong is saying that anything else is objectively wrong. That avoids any contradiction. This accepts the existence of objective morality in a very minimalist way. But it is still endorsing it as in principle true.

But both show that you have to accept objective morality. We cannot get away from bending the knee to objective morality. It is not that we won't. We simply cannot. It follows then that talk about objective morality is not really about theories or reasoning. It is compulsion. Objective morality is just there. It is a brute fact. It would be like arguing to yourself that you can see. You simply see and arguments are pointless.

If morality is mere opinion and religion won't admit it then the religion is to blame if it does harmful things. It does not matter if its teaching bans these things or not. It is more evil if it does what it bans!

And if morality is real, it does not follow anybody cares. You could be a giant in the philosophy of objective morality and still at heart be the kind of person who only follows it because it happens to match what you what to think and believe and do. Talking and acting moral does not necessarily prove you are really moral at your core.

Believers argue that attempts to say there is no real morality and we are simply programmed by our genes to think there is are coherent. But they add that they are unconvincing. Remember objective morality is about moral facts. It claims it is a fact that letting your dog play ball in front of an oncoming lorry is evil and bad. To say that that could be not wrong at all or neutral is to deny it is a fact. A fact is certain. To believe in objective morality because is it convincing is not enough. It shows you don't really have an objective morality at all.

Be a liberal for not being one gives you more morals to worry about. It makes you see people as more bad than you should see them. In fact, the moral person will see that having too many moral rules is immoral - it implies that things are being condemned and people are being condemned for what is not wrong. We must be liberal in our politics because liberalism seeks to let people find out what they want to do and do it without being under duress and to have access to the information they need to make a reasonably intelligent decision. Those who want to restrict our freedom accuse us of not being liberal. For example, Catholics who oppose birth control and abortion and divorce say the liberal is intolerant and not so liberal when it comes to their wishes as Catholics. But what do they expect for they are trying to stop people doing what they believe in and cannot settle for agreeing to disagree? We let them do what they want but we will not let them force their ban say on divorce on the country. You can’t be a liberal if you let schemes to remove freedom do their worst unchecked.

If we have a sense of moral obligation, and even atheists say they have it, then it follows that this sense matters more than why we have it. But religion worries away about God. It wants to make it all about God.

Religion says you cannot know that what is morally right is right unless you believe in a God that morality comes from and is based on. People ask questions. Are our morals basically uniform all over the world? Are morals innate? Are they part of what we are? Is a sense of morality necessary to be truly human? The answer is yes. So there is no need to involve God and it is inhuman to try to. To say that morals come from God is to create a God of the Gaps. In other words, "I don't know what makes moral moral therefore it is God." That is not an argument. The conclusion does not follow. It is a trick. If you base morality on that the end result will be hypocrisy not morality.

Many of the relativists are right that objective morality is taking a baby step towards oppressing others. The morality is itself oppressive for we are forced to bend the knee to it. The relativists have no room to talk either.


One reason why objective morality systems are seen as bigoted is that religion says that once you disbelieve in God you end up with no ground for morality.  That is a lie.  Many atheists think objective moral values are nonsense but they never argue, “God does not exist therefore there are no moral values.” They reject moral values as being real for other reasons. Many in fact drop God and then search for years for ways to ground objective morality. They would assert that if there is a God or if there is not, the matter has nothing to do with ethics or morals. God whether fact or fiction is simply irrelevant to the objective morality question.  One could say that objective morality needs to be grounded and we have to keep trying to find a way if there is no current way to do it.  The atheist who is in search of this ground but dismisses God as a help should not be condemned.