Sam Weaver
July 7, 2004
Morality, conscience, and the American ideal
By Sam Weaver

Webster's New World Dictionary defines morality: "1) moral quality or character; rightness or wrongness, as of an action 2) the character of being in accord with the principles or standards of right conduct; right conduct; sometimes, specif., virtue in sexual conduct 3) principles of right and wrong in conduct; ethics 4) a particular system of such principles...."

I have received a significant number of responses to previous columns chiding me for my simplistic view of morality and conscience. A few have argued quite eloquently that conscience is in the eyes of the beholder. In other words, humans do not possess an innate sense of right and wrong; rather, ideas of right and wrong behavior are programmed into the psyche of every human being by outside sources such as culture and family. Philosophically, scientifically — even logically — it is difficult to argue against this premise.

The very definition of morality demands some standard of right and wrong. Fundamentally, only three questions can be considered regarding morality and society: 1) Who or what must determine morality — the standard of right and wrong — for any society?, 2) How should that standard be taught and enforced?, and 3) Should there even be any standard of right and wrong in a free society?

In each and every totalitarian regime, the leader (or leaders) determine(s) the standards of right and wrong. These "standards" are taught in government-controlled schools and media, and are enforced by henchmen and judges who are sympathetic to the leader (or leaders).

The relativistic idea which declares that there should be no standard of right and wrong is the first step from a free society toward totalitarianism. The judicial system of every society necessarily relies upon some order of right and wrong behavior. Justice cannot exist without morality — some standard of right and wrong. Justice is either meted out by some powerful, controlling regime or it is understood instinctively by the people.

America is unique among every previous society of human history because America's Founders placed Truth and liberty far above tyranny. From the very beginning, America's Standard of right and wrong was the Word and Will of Divine Providence. Judeo-Christian principles (please see my next column) undergird the American Experiment. The Laws of Nature and Nature's God determined the Standard of right and wrong for the American people. A moral, educated and informed people, acting in liberty and free from governmental tyranny and control, were responsible for securing the blessings of liberty for future generations.

A lack of morality is the absence of principles. I deeply worry about an America that spends millions of dollars to witness the propaganda of Michael Moore or that glorifies the "sexploits" of Brittany Spears. I agonize over the very possibility that a man might soon be president of these United States who voted to legalize "partial birth" abortions (formerly known as DNX, or dilation and extraction), but now, in an effort to reconcile his views with mainstream America and Catholic doctrine, claims that "life begins at conception." If life begins at conception, then abortion in any shape or form, is murder. John Kerry is averse to "imposing his religion upon others." Where does imposing religion end and destroying every shred of morality begin?

America is slouching toward relativism. Relativism — the snubbing of morality — is the first rung on a ladder toward abject tyranny.

No nation can possess or even hope for liberty unless its electorate is generally moral, educated and informed. Two hundred and twenty-eight years after the United States of America was born, both the public schools and the mass media have rejected the Source of human rights. By decree of the courts, any mention of — even any reliance upon! — Divine Providence/Almighty God/Jesus Christ the Redeemer has been all but outlawed in our government-controlled schools and is shunned in our mass media. Sounds an awful lot like totalitarianism to me!

American liberty is possible only because the Standard of right and wrong was set neither upon the word, will nor the whim of some earthly king or panel of judges. American liberty is unique, great and possible because it was established upon the Word and the Will of Divine Providence — the Judeo-Christian God of the Holy Bible.

Absolutists (i.e., conservatives) believe in Almighty God and His Standard of Right and Wrong. Relativists (i.e., liberals) tend to look to changing attitudes, evolving mores, courts, and even tyrants (or tyrannical bureaucracies) to define and enforce some "enlightened," "diverse" and "all-encompassing" standard of morality for the people of the world. Conservatives believe that human conscience was imbedded within the DNA of every human being since that point in history when Adam and Eve partook of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Liberals, for the most part, see the entire book of Genesis as a fairy tale.

Ideas of morality and conscience cannot be argued purely from a philosophical, scientific or logical standpoint. These ideas are rooted in religion. Convictions respecting both the Source and the preservation of individual rights and liberty are illustrated in America's Declaration of Independence.

America was established upon Truth and liberty. Truth is the Word and Will of the Supreme Creator and Author of Law. Liberty is the right of every person to pursue happiness according to his/her own conscience with responsibility and accountability to the Laws of Nature and Nature's God. Relativistic concepts such as "share the wealth," "accommodation of evolving attitudes and mores," "a living and breathing constitution," "legislation from the bench," etc., etc., are not original American ideas. They subvert original American ideas. Bowing to French, German and Russian wishes is inherently anti-American.

Relativism betrays morality. By its very nature, relativism clouds any standard of right and wrong. On this 228th birthday of America and American liberty, let us remember the Standard upon which our rights and freedoms was founded. Let us never forget the Source of our liberty. We must fight the relativists as we fought both the Nazis and the Soviets. If we let the relativists such as Michael Moore and John Kerry win, then the War against Islamo-fascist Terrorism is already lost!

Happy birthday America! May you live to see many, many more; each more free, secure and enjoyable than the last!

© Sam Weaver

Comments feature added August 14, 2011

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Sam Weaver

Sam Weaver is a native Texan. Lively discussions back in 1984--first with his very liberal girlfriend, and then with several college instructors--made him question his beliefs and his belief system... (more)


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