Patton. So fight you against the friends of Satan; ever feeble is indeed the plot of Satan. Permission to fight is given to those who are fought against, because they have been wronged. Quran 4:76.
So fight you against the friends of Satan; ever feeble is indeed the plot of Satan. Permission to fight is given to those who are fought against, because they have been wronged. Quran 4:76 It is to this religion that we call you; the religion of showing kindness to others, establishing justice, granting rights, & defending the oppressed. It is the religion of unity & agreement on total equality between all people. So do not become weak against your enemy, nor be sad, & you will be superior in victory… Quran 3:139 Quran 22:39 Osama bin Laden Letter 24 Nov 02 “…by the permission of Allah, we shall be victorious.”
Today’s AssignmentReligion & Military Ethics (Divine Law) • EMP (4 Pages) • Religion and Military Ethics (Lucas), pp. 97-98; Religion and Morality: Exploring the Connections (Cook), pp. 99-103; Abraham’s Obedience Test, p. 135. • CSME (9 Pages) • A Sailor’s Request for Abortion Case (Rubel), pp. 167-169; Altering the Uniform (Gunther), pp. 171-176. • Objectives from reading: Religion in the Military (Divine Law) • What are differences & similarities between ethics based on divine command and ethics based on natural law? • What are the possible tensions between divine command & legal rules and obligations? (Give an example of such) • Are these tensions resolvable? • If yes: How? • If no: Why not?
Religion & Ethics Divine Command Theory - The Role of Religious Beliefs in Moral Reasoning Religion in the Military Hadithah, Iraq (Nov. 7, 2006) - U.S. Navy chaplains assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment (2/3) and Regimental Combat Team 5; the battalion commander and sergeant major of (2/3); and security teams from the Iraqi army visit South Dam Village in Haditha, to meet with its religious leader. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt Jason L. Jensen
Questions of the Day…? Is it Right because God commands it? or Does God command it because it is Right?
Constitution Mission Service Ship/Unit Shipmate Self Does God Fit In? ??? Your Personal Morals Your Official Obligation HOW DO OUR OWN BELIEFS AFFECT OUR INTERACTION WITH OTHERS, AND OUR DECISIONS AS LEADERS?
The Importance of Religion in Ethics • Isn’t ethics, after all, founded on religion? • Don’t most individuals derive their moral convictions from religious sources Sociologically: • a great many (over 50%) of armed forces personnel would describe themselves as religious • Why not simply teach religious ethics? • At very least, we must confront and explain the relationship
Divine Command Theory • DCT: When we say “a person is morally obligated to do something,” we mean “God has commanded that this be done” (Rachels) • DCT: We experience our morality in the form of “commands,” and only a divine being (God) has the requisite authority to issue such commands (Eberle) Aboard USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Nov. 20, 2003 -- Rabbi Michael A. Oppenheimer carries a 300-year-old Torah that was presented to the Navy's newest nuclear powered aircraft carrier by the Oppenheimer family. The family heirloom is one of only 300 Torahs that survived the Holocaust during World War II.
The Dilemma of Conflicting Duties • Story of Abraham • Conflicting religions, competing interpretations of “divine commands”
Practical Problems • Socrates’s dilemma with Euthyphro: • Is the Law righteous (just) because God ordains it, or does God ordain it because it is Just? • Abraham’s problem: • Religion does not always command what seems morally right • Knowledge and faith: • How do we know with certainty what God commands, and when (or whom) we are to obey?
Important Contributions of Religion to Morality (Cook) • Religions powerfully influence the sort of person one tries to become (character) • Religious belief offers a powerful incentive to be moral • Religion is a powerful argument against relativism • although religious beliefs may be consistent with moral pluralism • Religious convictions heighten the moral sensibilities and interpretive powers of most individuals Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Jan. 25, 2002) -- U.S. Navy Lt. Abuhena Saif Ul Islam, a Muslim Chaplain, speaks with a congressional delegation touring Camp X-Ray. Islam leads prayers five times a day for al Qaida and Taliban detainees being held there during Operation Enduring Freedom.
The Independence of Ethics • Regardless of your own, personal motivations (which may be religious), morality and the claims of moral obligation must be sufficient to stand on their own • Non-believers are as obligated as believers • Your religion may provide your reasons for action, but moral actions must also be capable of being justified by reasons beyond religion Is this really true?
Military Officers and Religion • While military officers may hold on to their personal beliefs, as officers in the US military, they are not entitled simply to operate on a wholly religious conception of morality without risking a serious and ongoing conflict with their Constitutional responsibilities and their individual commission and Oath of Office.
The Dilemma of Naval Leadership • As both a Naval Officer and a devout believer in one of the recognized religious faiths… • What happens when your devout religious beliefs conflict with natural law, with UCMJ, or with lawfully issued orders in the chain of command? • As a Naval Officer, when you have men & women under your command who themselves encounter the dilemma above… • What kind of counsel, leadership, advice, and example do you set or give?
Case StudyA Sailor’s Request for Abortion • The Ethical Questions: • Should the Commanding Officer approve or disapprove the chit? • What should be his considerations in this reasoning process (primary consideration, second, 3rd, ..) • Should he take into account his own strong beliefs about abortion? • What would you do if you were the Captain of this ship? • Do your religious beliefs in this area in any way effect your decision? • What is wrong with allowing our religious beliefs to guide us in our decision making? • Don’t we want our leaders to be moral? http://www-nehc.med.navy.mil/hp/sharp/pregnancy.htm
Case Study:The Christmas Party “Sir, I feel awkward bringing this up, but for the past few years, I did not feel I could attend the Command Christmas party. I am not a Christian, and although you have nothing at the party that worships Christ, it is a Christmas party, and that is a problem with my faith. I have not attended the party for the past 5 years for this reason.” “Well, I think I understand……But we have over 400 people attend each year and, frankly, its one of the highlights of year for us. It really raises the Command morale. CMC plays Santa, and hands out gag gifts. Last year he gave the CO a 3-foot rubber cell phone to poke fun at his always being on the phone. Everyone enjoys singing carols at the end. It’s really a lot of fun and the entire command looks forward to it. If we change the format or cancel the party I think everyone will be disappointed”
Case Study:The Christmas Party • What would you tell the C.O.? • Your Recommendations? • How do you deal with her religious beliefs? • Tell her to get over it; it’s one versus 400? • Change the format or cancel the party? • If you would not change or cancel the party: • Is that fair to her to dismiss her religious beliefs and imply that she cannot attend her own command party? • She is sincere in her beliefs…What if four people approached you with the same concern? • What if 10, 25, 50 people approached you? At what point do you consider the problem? • If you believe that you would change the format, or cancel the party, remember; Over 400 people really enjoy this format each year • Why change just for one person? Dec. 10, 2006) - Southwest Asia 1st Class Petty Officer's Association's president, Master-at-Arms 1st Class Malika Derios hands out Christmas gifts to service members from Camp Lemonier and Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa.
Altering the Uniform… • What are the issues? • Was the Supreme Court right? WHY or Why not? • Does our military oath limit our religious freedom? • What if other (lesser known) religions attempted to impose changes to military rules? • How will you deal w/ similar issues?
USAF Academy • What are the issues? • Real or perceived, what is the impact on Academy, internally and externally?
What Are Your Concerns as a Junior Officer? • Proselytizing • Discrimination • Command influence • Church and State • Imposition of “morals” • Spiritual needs of military members • Respect for beliefs • Freedom of Religion • Alignment with military values • How will you balance these concerns in the fleet? • Can you take an “Original Position Approach”? • Should you?
Reading & Homework for Next ClassNatural Law Objectives from reading: Natural Law Know difference between descriptive (scientific ), prescriptive (natural and divine), & human (civil, positive, statue) laws Comprehend Aquinas’ features of a law, how natural law can be explained in terms of moral standards and the 4 natural inclinations of human beings. Comprehend the concept of “the common good” vs. concept of “greatest good for the greatest number.” Know & apply the Principle of Forfeiture and the Principe of Double Effect • EMP (15 pages) • The Tradition of Natural Law (Lucas), pp. 195-198; from “Summa Theologica (St. Thomas Aquinas), pp. 199-202; from The Ethics of Natural Law (Harris), pp. 203-209.