究竟有没有取得道德进步?

墨尔本——在一个见证了两次世界大战、纳粹大屠杀、斯大林古拉格、柬埔寨杀戮场以及卢旺达和目前达尔富尔更多暴行的世纪,我们正在取得道德进步的观点似乎很难站得住脚。但道德进步所涉及的内容绝不仅仅局限在道德崩溃的极端案例。

今年是联合国大会通过《世界人权宣言》的60周年纪念日。为了应对第二次世界大战中所发生的罪行,《宣言》试图确立这样一个原则:那就是每个人都拥有同样的基本权利,而上述基本权利不受种族、肤色、性别、语言、宗教或其他状况的限制。于是,我们也许可以通过检验在与种族和性别歧视斗争方面所取得的成就,来判断我们究竟在多大程度上实现了道德进步的目标。

评估种族和性别歧视的实际减轻程度是一个异常艰巨的任务。尽管如此WorldPublicOpinion.org不久前进行的民意调查在这个问题上赋予了人们某些间接的启示。

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