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What Gets Aborted?

In his recent article "Do You Need God to Know That Abortion is Wrong?", Joe Heschmeyer shares an argument for why abortion is wrong. Now, the point of his article was not to advance or expound upon this argument, but it affords us with an opportunity to look into a common argument against abortion. As he states it, the argument goes like this: "The pro-life argument is simple: (1) human beings are alive from the moment of fertilization, and (2) it is morally wrong (and ought to be illegal)... Read More

Do You Need God to Know That Abortion is Wrong?

The New Republic’s latest contribution to the abortion debate is remarkable, in that, despite getting virtually everything it says factually wrong, it still raises an interesting problem for pro-choicers and atheists. Here’s the Twitter teaser to the piece that started it all: How the anti-choice platform is fighting to stay alive: http://t.co/m8kuGANs2Q pic.twitter.com/fxTeRyj444 — The New Republic (@tnr) April 17, 2015 According to the author of this piece, New Republic senior... Read More

Marriage, Natural Law, and the Truth of Sexual Ethics

Gary Gutting is a Notre Dame philosophy professor who thinks that what counts about arguments is whether they “work.” And so his complaint against natural-law arguments for Catholic teachings about sex is that they “no longer work (if they ever did)”. His New York Times “Opinionator” post of March 12th (“Unraveling the Church Ban on Gay Sex”) names us as two people who are “still” exponents of such arguments. For us what counts about an argument is whether it is sound,... Read More

Why Having a Heart of Gold is Not What Christianity is About

Many atheists and agnostics today insistently argue that it is altogether possible for non-believers in God to be morally upright. They resent the implication that the denial of God will lead inevitably to complete ethical relativism or nihilism. And they are quick to point out examples of non-religious people who are models of kindness, compassion, justice, etc. In point of fact, a recent article has proposed that non-believers are actually, on average, more morally praiseworthy than... Read More

What Racism Reveals About God and Man

A day after Thanksgiving, with the turkey and stuffing settled in our stomachs, it's a good time to reflect on one aspect of the holiday often ignored: historically, this was a day in which Americans were encouraged to call upon God both in gratitude for His blessings, and to ask mercy for our sins. We see seeds of this in Lincoln's 1863 Thanksgiving proclamation, the source of the modern holiday, in which he reminded Americans of “the gracious gifts of the most high God, who while dealing... Read More

On the So-Called “Choice-in-Dying”

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Filed under Morality

By now you’ve probably heard of the tragic story of Brittany Maynard, a 29-year-old woman who has an inoperable and terminal brain tumor. While Maynard’s age makes her condition unusual, what has really brought her story attention is her decision to end her life. According to CNN.com: "After several surgeries, doctors said in April that her brain tumor had returned and gave her about six months to live. She moved from California to Oregon to take advantage of that state's law and says... Read More

Answering Three Common Arguments for Abortion

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Filed under Morality

NOTE: The following post, the second of two from Trent Horn, is excerpted from a new book he will publish in September defending the pro-life position. Read the first post here.   In Part 1 of this short series, we saw that there isn’t a way to consistently define what a “person” is that includes newborns but excludes fetuses and non-human animals. In this post I will examine “body-rights” arguments for abortion that take advantage of the difference between newborns and... Read More

Can Atheists Defend Abortion Without Defending Infanticide?

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Filed under Morality

NOTE: The following post, the first of two from Trent Horn, is excerpted from a new book he will publish in September defending the pro-life position.   Let's begin by noting that while not all atheists are pro-choice, a sizable majority are. In fact, a recent Gallup poll revealed that those with no religious attachment are the most likely demographic to identify as pro-choice. With that in mind, let me present what I think is the strongest argument for the moral and legal permissibility... Read More

Moral Relativism, Conscience, and G.E.M. Anscombe

G.E.M. Anscombe

What should we make of the proposal that there's no such thing as objective morality, that morals are just determined by cultures or by individuals? That's what I'd like to address in this post. I specifically engage the cultural relativism advocated by Ruth Benedict, who claimed that “good” and “evil” are socially determined. I argue instead for the moral absolutism advocated by the British Catholic analytical philosopher Elizabeth Anscombe (G.E.M. Anscombe). This post will proceed... Read More

The Acts We Perform and the People We Become

From the 1950’s through the late 1970’s Karol Wojtyla (later Pope John Paul II) was a professor of moral philosophy at the Catholic University of Lublin in Poland, specializing in sexual ethics and what we call today “marriage and family life.” He produced two important books touching on these matters, The Acting Person, a rigorously philosophical exploration of Christian anthropology, and Love and Responsibility, a much more accessible analysis of love, sex, and marriage. These... Read More

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