By Jason D. Hill (auth.)
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Extra info for Civil Disobedience and the Politics of Identity: When We Should Not Get Along
Since moral fundamentals are the linchpin and foundation of one’s moral conscience, to compromise on fundamentals, especially when those moral fundamentals that are the foundation of conscience might be a constitutive feature of one’s personal identity, is to sell out the principles around which one’s very moral coherency rests. Moral disagreements with those we get along with are still conducive to moral coherency, which I shall deﬁne shortly. Not getting along with those with whom one disagrees can be the surest way of preserving one’s moral coherency.
My friend was determined to convince me that it was a good ﬁlm. But how to convince another that something one has found banal and tedious could possibly be good? It took me a while to realize that we would scarcely reconcile our differences and that given the heatedness of our debates that we were committing a category mistake. We had elevated levels of taste to that of morality and had framed the debate as if we had a disagreement over moral fundamentals. Was it worth undermining the moral and social cohesiveness –the very social fabric of our relationship— over personal tastes?
Moral postulates are accepted on either edict or faith but cannot change and evolve to accommodate the complexities of contemporary life. Third, moral clarity does not involve indiscriminately applying abstract principles to real life solutions—some of them do, but moral clarity of the sort involved in this discussion involves knowledge of knowing the facts. It means that before one can deliberate, evaluate and then render judgments about a moral dilemma that one knows the relevant information pertaining to that which is in moral inquiry, and that there is a method for evaluating this information.