are ethical statements just emotive?

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MattG
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emotivism:

"X is good" is emotional appeal & holds no truth (none verifiable). Not a value claim but a psychological claim. It is not cognitively meaningful. "

just being doing an essay on this. the argument is that ethical statements are not verifiable, there is no empirical testing that would prove an ethical statement right or wrong. do you think then that all ethics are are statements of emotion and are meaningless?

"The meta-ethical theory according to which the meaning of moral language is exhausted by its expression, evocation, or endorsement of powerful human feelings. Thus, for example, saying "Stealing is wrong," is just an especially strong way of reporting that I disapprove of stealing, evoking a similar disapproval from others"
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Juwel
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Ethical statements are based on value judgments, they are subjective, bla bla. Doesn't render them meaningless.
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MattG
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(Original post by ZJuwelH)
Ethical statements are based on value judgments, they are subjective, bla bla. Doesn't render them meaningless.
how are they meaningful?
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Juwel
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(Original post by MattG)
how are they meaningful?
How not?
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pedy1986
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(Original post by MattG)
emotivism:

"X is good" is emotional appeal & holds no truth (none verifiable). Not a value claim but a psychological claim. It is not cognitively meaningful. "

just being doing an essay on this. the argument is that ethical statements are not verifiable, there is no empirical testing that would prove an ethical statement right or wrong. do you think then that all ethics are are statements of emotion and are meaningless?

"The meta-ethical theory according to which the meaning of moral language is exhausted by its expression, evocation, or endorsement of powerful human feelings. Thus, for example, saying "Stealing is wrong," is just an especially strong way of reporting that I disapprove of stealing, evoking a similar disapproval from others"
I wouldn't consider this a good debate/dicussion considering not many people really know about this stuff including myself - it requires specialist knowledge.

Still, that doesn't really make sense for me, surely a moral statement is more than just expressing an emotion on something. A moral statement requires the ablity to disagree with it and this doesn't allow this because I can say 'Stealing is wrong' you can say 'Stealing is right' but through this theory we don't disagree...but surely the statements say we do?

(My knowledge is limited on Ethics so sorry if that doesn't make sense)
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llama boy
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I dislike emotivism intently, but it is past midnight and I certainly ain't writing it all out now...
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rIcHrD
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(Original post by MattG)
emotivism:

"X is good" is emotional appeal & holds no truth (none verifiable). Not a value claim but a psychological claim. It is not cognitively meaningful. "

just being doing an essay on this. the argument is that ethical statements are not verifiable, there is no empirical testing that would prove an ethical statement right or wrong. do you think then that all ethics are are statements of emotion and are meaningless?

"The meta-ethical theory according to which the meaning of moral language is exhausted by its expression, evocation, or endorsement of powerful human feelings. Thus, for example, saying "Stealing is wrong," is just an especially strong way of reporting that I disapprove of stealing, evoking a similar disapproval from others"
The first sentence is true to most intents and purposes. The third sentence requires you to define meaning.

Ethics is a function of emotion AND society, not emotion alone. Whether it is meaningful or not as before needs you to define meaning. The rest is argumentative.
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Leaby
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I'd argue that emotivism is true some of the time - people often produce a moral argument based purely on experience, which IS emotive and often there is no justification involved. However, how often do you listen to an argument like this and consider it to be valid?
Basically, then, the validitity of moral arguments must come from something else: the arguments involved in order to support them. However, perhaps if an individual were to view a moral argument and accept all of its justification to such an extent that it became an embedded opinion, perhaps it could become an emotion. However, Ayer was talking out of his bum when he said that all moral arguments are emotions.
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