Articles: Moral Relativism and the Normalization of the Indefensible

Originally posted at American Thinker.

imagesAn affront to humanity took place in Santa Ana, California when a morally relativistic arbiter, Superior Court Judge M. Marc Kelly, pronounced his sentence on a child abuser. Based on his personal opinion, Kelly said that the events leading up to a three-year-old girl being sodomized determined that punishing the sex offender was “unconstitutional.”

In Judge Kelly’s relativistic worldview, Kevin Jonas Rojano-Nieto, the 20-year-old who took a break from playing video games in a garage to force a small child to perform lewd and lascivious acts, did not display “violence or callous disregard for (the child’s) well-being.”  Apparently in Judge Kelly’s eyes, covering a child’s mouth with your hand, pulling down her pants, and forcing her to fondle your genitals is not that wrong of a “wrongful act.”

According to Judge Kelly, since the child wandered into the garage on her own, and even though an “inexplicably” sexually aroused man proceeded to assault her, Rojano-Nieto’s behavior cannot be defined as predatory.  And even though the girl was physically and emotionally wounded, Kelly said, Rojano-Nieto “did not appear to consciously intend to harm (the victim) when he sexually assaulted her.”

The judge concluded that “Although serious and despicable, this does not compare to a situation where a pedophilic child predator preys on an innocent child.”  As proof that he has absolutely no commitment to moral absolutes, Kelly deviated from the usual minimum sentence of 25-years-to-life in prison and shortened Rojano-Nieto’s sentence to less than half of that.

In defense of his decision, Kelly noted that according to a doctor’s report, the sodomizer suffered “a great deal of family disruption and abuse, making him an insecure, socially withdrawn, timid, and extremely immature young man with limited self-esteem.”  The judge used a doctor’s report to rationalize Rojano-Nieto sexually gratifying himself by defiling a tiny child.

Meanwhile, in New Hampshire, in comments that suggested he values raising taxes over sustaining life, state representative/computer techie Michael Cahill (D) revealed his own unique brand of moral relativism.

It’s common knowledge that as a group, Democrats maintain that moral standards are not above personal choice.  That’s why it shouldn’t shock anyone that Mr. Cahill freely blurted out that if Republicans in New Hampshire refuse to raise the taxes necessary to build handicapped ramps, the state should solve the problem by euthanizing the disabled.

That’s right, during a legislative debate, a progressive representative of the people of the “Live free or die” state actually asked “Since we are refusing to raise revenues to fund needed programs, to fund services to disabled, for example, have you looked at euthanasia?”

In response, House Speaker Shawn Jasper (R-NH) declared Cahill out of order and referred to his “euthanasia” comment as “inappropriate,” which in some circles would relegate Mr. Jasper to the politically-incorrect category of judgmental absolutist.

Nonetheless, even if Cahill was making a tasteless attempt at sarcasm, either way, for him and his party the moral duty to pay taxes clearly usurps the moral duty to reject murder.  And who’s to say he’s wrong?  Certainly not another moral relativist, because criticism of such a suggestion runs the risk of having those who think like Cahill being forced to admit that wickedness actually exists.

Can’t have that.

Instead, whether we like it or not, Americans are now at the mercy of a bankrupt society where the crime of sexually assaulting a child is minimized by a judge who measures the “wrongful act” of sodomy against whether or not the offender stalked his victim or felt remorse after murdering a little girl’s soul in the pursuit of sexual satisfaction.  Moreover, it’s where, in a game of political tit-for-tat, elected politicians who have already justified murdering 60 million unborn babies are now publicly joking that sometimes fiscal prudence excuses terminating the disabled.

So, sadly, in place of virtuous standards, a viewpoint that reeks of self-serving arrogance is currently in the process of institutionally degrading America’s legal and political systems and systematically progressing to a point where the indefensible is now being defended.

According to the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (IEP), which describes itself as a “peer-reviewed academic resource,” moral relativism is defined as a “view that moral judgments are true or false only relative to some particular standpoint … and that no standpoint is uniquely privileged over all others.”

In essence, moral relativism is the belief that there are no moral absolutes and that no person or culture has the right, based on a basic sense of right and wrong, to impose ethical or moral judgments on those whose belief system differs from their own.

As a result, America has been fundamentally transformed into an egocentric culture populated with 330 million individuals, many of whom have been led to believe that personal conscience is the highest authority.

The credibility of moral relativism is shaky, because even for the most ardent relativist there’s always a limit to what principled sensibilities can endure. That’s why every relativist should exercise extreme caution when reacting to the unthinkable, lest a code of ethics be established that even skeptics might be forced to acknowledge.

And as twisted as that may sound to those who subscribe to archaic standards like Biblical doctrine, natural law and universal principles, America is now sliding into further decline because without fear of rebuke, moral equivocators are dismissing despicable behavior and publicly verbalizing vile sentiments.

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