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Monday, March 30, 2015

The Kids Are All Right

Have we made our children into moral monsters?

By Daniel Engber
Originally published March 16, 2015

We’re in the middle of a moral panic—a panic over morals. An op-ed posted Monday in the New York Times warns that our children don’t believe in moral facts. They don’t get that things are right or wrong; they don’t accept the inner truth of values. Should a person lie or cheat or kill to get ahead? Kids today, these kids today, they couldn’t say for sure. I mean, aren’t ethics just, like, a matter of opinion? Everyone totally gets to have their own opinions, amirite?

This Village of the Damned scenario, laid out by Fort Lewis College philosopher Justin McBrayer, has clearly struck a chord. As of Thursday, it sat among the Times’ five most emailed, viewed, and shared articles of the week, and has inspired more than 1,800 comments. McBrayer’s most alarming claim—the one that pushed his essay into Facebook feeds and Twitter timelines—tells us how the nation’s youth came to be so dissolute. If millennials haven’t learned respect for ethics, it’s because we grown-ups let them down.

The entire article is here.