In our reading for next class, in our text, Readings in Moral Philosophy, in pages 125-160, professor John Rawls explains his answer to how to figure out what is must and moral. His answer is called ‘Justice as Fairness’. He asks us to imagine we are behind a veil, he calls it a ‘Veil of Ignorance’ where we don’t know much about ourselves. We don’t know our place in society, our social status, or natural abilities, or strengths, or our intelligence.
Behind this veil of ignorance we are in what he calls ‘The Original Position’. Now, he says, imagine that you are behind this veil and do not know these things about yourself. What rules for morality, or laws, in your country would you decide upon? Would you prefer high taxes or low? Freedom of speech or no freedom of speech? Free education? Redistribution of wealth to poor people, etc.?
With this in mind, here is our forum question for this week:
- If you were behind this veil of ignorance, and you were in a position of power so you could make the rules for your country, what laws or policies would you decide upon for your society?