Quick Reaction: Was the Syria Strike Morally Permissible?*

April 8, 2017 Walter Montgomery 18

Thursday’s U.S. missile strike on Syria, in response to the earlier chemical attack by Assad’s regime, makes for great applied ethics material. I don’t have much time to explore this event in depth, but I thought I’d write up some brief thoughts on whether the strike was morally permissible, and then open it up for further discussion in the comments thread. I’ll set aside questions concerning whether this was prudent, whether it was Trump breaking [Continue reading]

A Response to Jenkins and Ichikawa: If You Like Your Mononormativity, You Can Keep Your Mononormativity

March 25, 2017 Walter Montgomery 6

This post was inspired by the recent widely read Chronicle of Higher Education’s “I have Multiple Loves”, featuring University of British Columbia philosopher Carrie Ichikawa Jenkins. The subtitle is, “Carrie Jenkins makes the philosophical case for polyamory,” but there isn’t much of a case made. Instead, it’s more of an extended interview in which Jenkins rebuffs some rather weakly stated objections to polyamory. The article touches on many other topics too, such as analytic philosophy [Continue reading]

Go Ahead, Make My Day—Defund the NEH!

March 20, 2017 Walter Montgomery 10

I was really encouraged by the Trump administration’s recent budget proposal because it included the elimination of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). It’s about time! Unsurprisingly, the proposal was met with anger by most in the humanities. For instance, the American Association of  University Professors drafted an open letter of opposition, calling for members to sign it. At publication time, their homepage also featured a petition [Continue reading]

The Demetriou Debacle and the Shameless Hypocrisy of Daily Nous

February 19, 2017 Walter Montgomery 33

Daily Nous recently reported on a controversy surrounding philosopher Dan Demetriou (University of Minnesota, Morris). Demetriou, who describes himself as “ideologically right,” published a Facebook post (whose privacy status was set to “friends only”) that someone decided to share publicly. Comments from his post were then widely circulated at the University of Minnesota in an effort to shame him. The chancellor issued a typical virtue-signalling statement about how she found Demetriou’s comments “both personally and [Continue reading]

There are No “Safe Spaces”

February 13, 2017 Walter Montgomery 8

Today, I bring good news. Not all millennials are little snowflakes—maybe not even a majority. At the beginning of this semester, I asked my students to a write short essay on whether they thought so-called “safe spaces” are appropriate at universities (see here for another Rightly Considered post addressing safe spaces). Because you see, at my university, the students have had safe spaces shoved down their throats lately. A safe space was immediately set up after [Continue reading]

Make Philosophy Great Again: End Leiter Reports and Daily Nous

January 12, 2017 Walter Montgomery 24

For many years, Leiter Reports served as the primary philosophy blog for professional philosophy. Many have criticized Leiter for his handling of squabbles with other philosophers, which seemingly led to many wanting an alternative. Into this vacuum Justin Weinberg stepped, creating Daily Nous. Daily Nous seemed like an improvement at first. Leiter’s polemical, ad hominem approach was replaced with the measured and thoughtful attitude of Weinberg. But, over time, it became clear that Weinberg was [Continue reading]

A Conservative Virtue

December 17, 2016 Walter Montgomery 0

True conservatives are cautious in making judgments. That’s not to say that all who identify as conservative are cautious in making judgments; when such people fail to be cautious in making judgments, they fail to act in a truly conservative way. Nor is it to say that liberals are uncautious in making judgments. A liberal could be cautious in making a judgment, but in doing so, he would not be acting liberally; rather, he would [Continue reading]

A More Honest Statement from the APA

December 9, 2016 Walter Montgomery 34

In a typical display of thoughtfulness, the American Politicized Association (formerly the American Philosophical Association) board of officers unanimously approved and issued the statement below concerning the election: Take a gander at the presentation titles they’re proudly advertising. We have taken the liberty to re-write the APA’s statement in a way that exposes their implicit biases, followed by a list of talks that might be advertised if the APA sanctioned a different political vision: 2017 [Continue reading]

Assessing Responsibility for the OSU Attack

December 2, 2016 Walter Montgomery 13

How would a normal leftist assess what just happened at Ohio State University? As you know by now, the attacker was a Somali born Muslim man. Not long ago, he was featured in Ohio State’s student newspaper, The Lantern. In the story he said, I mean, I’m new here. This is my first day. This place is huge, and I don’t even know where to pray. I wanted to pray in the open, but I [Continue reading]

The Recount Dilemma

November 29, 2016 Walter Montgomery 4

In one of the least surprising turn of events since Donald Trump won the presidential election, leftists are demanding recounts in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. The irony of such requests is probably not lost on our readers, but let’s highlight it anyway. The people calling for recounts are the same people who object to voter ID laws, due in part to the supposed incredibly low rate of voter fraud. Why do we need a recount [Continue reading]