A one word answer was requested. I had to answer “Neither.”
The very question demands moral absolutism, which is absolutely crazy, In My Humble Opinion. I don’t think I can completely agree with moral relativism either. For a good read on the two and the middle ground I am likely to stand on, read this blog post.
One thing from that blog post I’d like to comment on :
Immanuel Kant might seem to come close when he argues that you should be
honest even when an enraged killer asks you where your dad is.
I believe in being honest at all times. I think the above framed question claims a dual option – either you lie to the killer or you tell the killer where your dad is. My response is neither. “I’m not going to tell you,” satisfies both protecting your dad and being honest. “I don’t want to tell you,” may, in some cases, be more honest. “I don’t know,” can be an honest answer even if you know he is upstairs – you don’t know what room he is in, although you could probably guess.
I suppose what I am trying to impart is that Morality is like an Onion.
One example is Tom Hsieh, whose Bolder Giving story begins with
disarming humility: “When I graduated from college, God pointed out to
me: 1) He has a heart for the poor, and 2) I didn’t.” This revelation
led Hsieh to work with an international missions and development group
and to start the habit of giving away whatever money he didn’t need. Now
in his mid-30s and an executive with a technology firm, Hsieh and his
wife have committed to living at or below the national median income
(which last year meant living on $38,000 and giving away the rest of his
$200,000-plus salary). They live in the second-poorest neighborhood in
Los Angeles County, a context that Hsieh notes makes giving easy, as the
reality of the needs of the world are at their doorstep.
Surprise! Despite endless American complaints about over-taxation, the
U.S. has one of the world’s lowest marginal income tax rates, at 27%.
Along with what, by comparison with the high rates cited above, seems a
relatively low rate, the U.S. has the world’s biggest economy, with a GDP of over $1,400 billion.
Talk about Dogma vs Reality!! Its kind of the same thing with our Corporate Tax Rate – the stated rate is really high – the rate they actually pay is very low.