Emotivism Analyzed: Moral judgment is backed by reason

EMOTIVISM IS THE THEORY IN ETHICS that states that moral judgments do not state any fact at all but are mere expressions of one’s attitude used to influence people’s attitudes and conduct.
          Nonetheless, ethicist James Rachels in his bookThe Elements of Moral Philosophy (USA:McGraw-Hill College, 3rd ed., 1999) proved very well that a moral judgment or any kind of value judgment must be supported by good reasons. If someone tells you that a certain action is wrong, you may ask why it is wrong, and if there is no satisfactory answer, you may reject that advice as baseless.
          In this sense, at least, moral judgments are different from mere expressions of personal preference. If someone says, “I like Coke Zero,” he does not need to have a reason; he may be making a statement about his personal taste and nothing more. But moral judgments, such as “Corruption is wrong,” require backing by reasons, and in the absence of such reasons, they are “merely arbitrary”.
            Emotivism therefore falls short of being a good moral theory for not taking into account the role played by reason in Ethics. It fails to note, too, that not just any fact can count as a reason in support of just any judgment. For one thing, “the fact must be relevant to the judgment, and psychological influence does not necessarily bring relevance with it” (e.g. being anti-American is irrelevant to viciousness, regardless of the psychological connections in anyone’s mind).

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“Emotivism Analyzed: Moral judgment is backed by reason (Notes in Ethics)
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