Environmental Ethics

Volume 2, Issue 4, Winter 1980

Don E. Marietta, Jr.
Pages 369-371

World Views and Moral Decisions
A Reply to Tom Regan

Tom Regan (this issue) criticizes my thesis that obligation toward the environment is grounded in a world view and thereby has a moral overridingness which mere interests and desires do not have. He holds that my approach is too subjectivistic. I counter, first, by explaining that phenomenology, which I use in my analysis of moral obligation, is not subjectivistic in the way emotivism or prescriptivism in ethics is subjectivistic. Second, I argue that world views are products of learning and experience of one shared world, that most world views share large areas of agreement, and that they can be argued for and criticized.