Viewpoint Diversity in Irish universities

Mercurial

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In the interest of viewpoint diversity, what are the origins of Ideas (on race, gender, sexual-orientation, religion etc.) that are upheld by people like Merc ? In debates with Merc, the people that debate him nearly always cite and link articles (often academic ones) that oppose Mercs view. I don't have any recollection of Merc citing back in return with academic links. I have the impression Merc is an academic in the social sciences field, am I wrong ?

I do not mean to pick on Merc at all. If anyone else, can point to the origins of the lefts more radical ideas on race, gender, sexuality please do.

Note, equality of opportunity is not radical at this point. It is enshrined in law in the western democracies.

Equality of outcome is an example of a radical left viewpoint. Another is the white straight males are the source of injustice in society.





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lol
 


Mercurial

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Thought that alright..
Anyway, I found this..seems to be one of the most common and established textbooks used (even covers intersectionalism). It might be recommended for people who are scratching their head about some of the wild sh:t happening in the world today...

https://www.routledge.com/Readings-for-Diversity-and-Social-Justice-4th-Edition/Adams-Blumenfeld-Catalano-Dejong-Hackman-Hopkins-Love-Peters-Shlasko-Zuniga/p/book/9781138055285



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Better options, in no particular order:

“An Introduction to Political Philosophy” by Jonathan Wolff.
“Contemporary Political Philosophy: An Introduction” by Will Kymlicka.
“Political Philosophy” by Adam Swift.
 

AyaanMyHero

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Feel I am fighting an uphill battle here. If you don't want or need your views to be understood any more than they are, that's fine with me.


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Mercurial

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Feel I am fighting an uphill battle here. If you don't want or need your views to be understood any more than they are, that's fine with me.


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My views on political philosophy are mainly influenced by John Rawls and GA Cohen, and my views on ethics by RM Hare and Derek Parfit.
 

AyaanMyHero

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My views on political philosophy are mainly influenced by John Rawls and GA Cohen, and my views on ethics by RM Hare and Derek Parfit.
Never heard of them but that is no surprise.
I checked out John Rawls very quickly and find he was very well respected for his work. I understand he believed that one should, as a primary objective, optimize society/political policy to improve the welfare of the least well-off. Policies that support inequality of outcome are OK but any policy that does not improve the welfare of the least well off is not a good policy.

I personally find it difficult to argue with that principle. My guess is that it becomes hard to judge whether a given policy is a good one or not. Some questions jump to mind: Are people not somewhat responsible for their own welfare ? If some people take no responsibility for their own welfare and these are the least well off people, then does it mean you optimize society for their benefit ? Is that not putting society on a hiding to nothing i.e. there is less incentive for people to take responsibility and the population of irresponsible people increases ? Is their something about the human condition that guarantees we do not all aim for the lowest energy state i.e. of total laziness ?

Rawls seems to have addressed some problems with answering of these questions with his "veil of ignorance" test to take away biases that are based on ones current standing in society.
 

AyaanMyHero

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My views on political philosophy are mainly influenced by John Rawls and GA Cohen, and my views on ethics by RM Hare and Derek Parfit.
GA Cohen seems not as well regarded at Rawls. Cowen is a marxist it seems. I watched a video (shot sometime in the 1980's) where Cowen critiques capitalism. He does his best to point out weaknesses of capitalism and its capacity to abuse the citizen. What seemed most disagreeable to me was that he portrays the citizen as someone under the irresistible influence of consumerism. I think consumerism is a powerful force but there are many people who can resist it and there may even be educational solutions for those who cannot. I just think that argument does not give human capability enough credit. PS: not a lot of thought went into this so don't be too hard on me :) probably lots of biases coming out.

I think Rawls has influenced today's political thinking which leads me to think I should pay some more attention to him.
I doubt Cohen's Marxist ideas are very much at work in today's world and thus, not sure it would be of the same value to pay his ideas more attention.
 

Mercurial

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GA Cohen seems not as well regarded at Rawls. Cowen is a marxist it seems. I watched a video (shot sometime in the 1980's) where Cowen critiques capitalism. He does his best to point out weaknesses of capitalism and its capacity to abuse the citizen. What seemed most disagreeable to me was that he portrays the citizen as someone under the irresistible influence of consumerism. I think consumerism is a powerful force but there are many people who can resist it and there may even be educational solutions for those who cannot. I just think that argument does not give human capability enough credit. PS: not a lot of thought went into this so don't be too hard on me :) probably lots of biases coming out.

I think Rawls has influenced today's political thinking which leads me to think I should pay some more attention to him.
I doubt Cohen's Marxist ideas are very much at work in today's world and thus, not sure it would be of the same value to pay his ideas more attention.
Rawls is probably the most important English-speaking political philosopher of the 20th century, at least inside the academy. I’m a fan of Cohen’s mainly because I agree with some significant criticisms he had of Rawls’ work. Very roughly speaking, Rawls defends something like a modern liberal welfare state (albeit no actual states fully satisfy his principles of justice) while Cohen was a Marxist who thought Rawls was too soft on those who demand higher wages for doing jobs that are particularly important to society.
 

Mercurial

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Never heard of them but that is no surprise.
I checked out John Rawls very quickly and find he was very well respected for his work. I understand he believed that one should, as a primary objective, optimize society/political policy to improve the welfare of the least well-off. Policies that support inequality of outcome are OK but any policy that does not improve the welfare of the least well off is not a good policy.

I personally find it difficult to argue with that principle. My guess is that it becomes hard to judge whether a given policy is a good one or not. Some questions jump to mind: Are people not somewhat responsible for their own welfare ? If some people take no responsibility for their own welfare and these are the least well off people, then does it mean you optimize society for their benefit ? Is that not putting society on a hiding to nothing i.e. there is less incentive for people to take responsibility and the population of irresponsible people increases ? Is their something about the human condition that guarantees we do not all aim for the lowest energy state i.e. of total laziness ?

Rawls seems to have addressed some problems with answering of these questions with his "veil of ignorance" test to take away biases that are based on ones current standing in society.

I’m travelling at the moment, so I can’t give a long reply to this, but these are all good questions I’d like to address later when I have time. Give me a pm in a couple of days if I haven’t replied.
 

AyaanMyHero

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https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/university-culture-free-speech-spiked-no-platforming-a7580041.html

The viewpoint of a student union leader in the UK.
To put it simply, we believe that freedom of expression is a universal right. This means that it belongs to all. However we also acknowledge that in a deeply divided society, not everyone possesses those rights simply by virtue of their existence.
Safe spaces are not used on all campuses, but where they are it is to amplify the voices of those who are struggling to be heard. It is about empowering them with their own freedom of expression.
Ours is a generation that believes that the liberty of the oppressed must be protected: we say No Platform for fascists as we have a duty to protect democracy from those who would use it to destroy it. But we are not content to preserve what we have: we seek to challenge the inequalities that allow some people to use their voice to suppress that of others.
Summarized by me as follows: "You are not allowed be critical of behaviors or beliefs of certain groups of people that are viewed by this SU leader as subject to discrimination or people that this SU leader views as unable to defend their behavior/beliefs from such criticism".

Firstly, in what world does this SU leader live in ? Law supports equal opportunity for all and prohibits discrimination. Universities would be in the lead on following that law and going beyond it in the search for diversity.

Secondly, if the people cannot defend their own beliefs and behavior from criticism, why no-platform the critic ? It is not the fault of the critic. I sense that this SU leader feels sorry for certain "soft spoken targets of criticism". There are lots of ways to support such people. Trying to stop the criticism is hardly going to work. It is akin to wrapping them in bubble-wrap.
 


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