Reflection Paper 1 In “The Challenge of Cultural Relativism,” James Rachels and Stuart Rachels offer the idea that three things follow from Cultural Relativism (20-22):
1. “We could no longer say that the customs of other societies are morally inferior to our own” (20).
2. “We could no longer criticize the code of our own society” (21).
3. “The idea of moral progress is called into doubt” (21).
I will object only to the second idea that from Cultural Relativism “We could no longer criticize the code of our own society” (21). Rachels and Rachels say this because, in their interpretation of Cultural Relativism, we judge if something is right or wrong by looking at how society views something, and accepting the answer (21). They give this reasoning with the example of a citizen of India questioning if the caste system is morally correct, and agreeing with it because society does (21). I do not see that Cultural Relativism causes the citizen to accept societies answer. According to the five claims of Cultural Relativism, given to us by Rachels and Rachels, if something is right in society then it is morally right; but this does not limit the culture of being able to change. I mean then, that Cultural Relativism does not say that just because something is morally right now does not mean that it cannot change to become morally wrong later. For example, slavery was once widely accepted in the United States. Something changed within our…