180F0013 - desirable • Moral arguments are to the effect that a certain course of action is right(or wrong or virtuous(or not or that something

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The Obligation to Obey the Law
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Class objectives To examine argument of the Crito for obeying the law and submitting to punishment To distinguish prudential from moral arguments To understand the argument of F. Douglass in favor of breaking a law in service of a higher moral principle
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Crito’s arguments Crito does not want Socrates to submit: 1. Because it will be the loss of a dear friend and teacher. 2. Because others will think that C cares more for his money, possessions, and reputation than for his friend, since C did not help S to escape.
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Crito’s moral arguments 1. Socrates is helping his enemies to destroy him, and this is wrong. 2. S is betraying his sons by not being there to care for them and teach them. 3. S is being cowardly by taking the easiest path.
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Prudence and morality Prudential arguments are to the effect that a certain course of action is (or is not) wise or in one’s interest or most
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Unformatted text preview: desirable. • Moral arguments are to the effect that a certain course of action is right (or wrong), or virtuous (or not), or that something is good (or bad). Socrates Response to Crito • One must do what is right regardless of the majority opinion • What is right (and wise) is to stay and accept punishment – (see handout for the moral argument) – (see pgs. 177-8) Frederick Douglass • 1818-1895 • Born a slave, but escaped to freedom as a young man. • Became a brilliant philosopher, orator, and politician • Worked for abolition of slavery, women’s rights, and civil rights for African Americans Fugitive Slave Bill, 1850 “Is it Right and Wise to Kill a Kidnapper?” • The “kidnapper” was not doing something that was illegal, but rather immoral. • What are our rights/obligations with respect to the fugitive slave? • Ought we obey the law when it is immoral?...
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This note was uploaded on 05/05/2008 for the course PHIL 180 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '07 term at Kansas.

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180F0013 - desirable • Moral arguments are to the effect that a certain course of action is right(or wrong or virtuous(or not or that something

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