All of Amanda_MacAskill's Comments + Replies

Blind Spots: Compartmentalizing

I don't think this is a fair restriction on commentary for this sort of article, especially since you go into the example in such detail. You're suggesting that having EA beliefs seems to imply a higher degree of belief in the immorality of abortion than some people do have. People can respond to this by (a) retaining their abortion beliefs and changing their EA beliefs, (b) retaining their EA beliefs and changing their abortion beliefs, (c) retaining their EA beliefs and their abortion beliefs and rejecting the consistency requirement, or (d) retaining their EA beliefs and their abortion beliefs and rejecting the entailment. I don't really see why we should prevent people from defending (d) here.

Blind Spots: Compartmentalizing

I've just skimmed this, so sorry if any of these points are covered already.

(1) On the moral uncertainty argument: I think people tend to overlook the fact that abortion can be morally obligatory according to utilitarianism. If having a child will divert the time and financial resources of people away from more effective causes then, especially if we consider the expected far future impact of those resources, someone can be strongly morally obligated to have an abortion. In general, it seems like utilitarianism is going to tend to have pretty strong recomm... (read more)

2Dale7yTrue, and it's worth breaking down what might be publcally damaging: * the demandingness - that would take a lot of work, and people dislike being told they're immoral for not doing anything * the hypocrisy - if you believed that EAs were exempt from this obligation But we shouldn't let considerations of what is politically correct affect what we believe. We should try to believe that which is true. I'm not sure why this would be a worry. Yes, moral uncertainty arguments might contradict our prior beliefs. But what is the point of considering new arguments if not to change our minds? We shouldn't expect novel arguments to always yield reassuringly early-21st-century-liberal conclusions. (I say this as someone who believes gay marriage is probably a good thing).