Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Moral Grandstanding

Public moral discourse involves talking about serious and important issues: the evaluation of conditions that greatly affect the well‐being of millions of people, the leveling of accusations that could ruin lives, the consideration of a policy that could save or ruin a state and its subjects, and so on. These are matters that generally call for other‐directed concern, and yet grandstanders find a way to make discussion at least partly about themselves. In using public moral discourse to promote an image of themselves to others, grandstanders turn their contributions to moral discourse into a vanity project.

[From Justin Tosi and Brandon Warmke, "Moral Grandstanding," Philosophy & Public Affairs, Volume44, Issue3 (Summer 2016) 197-217, found online here.]

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