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Evolution does not preclude morals

By Audie L. Alcorn
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
February 9, 2000
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To the editor,

In J. Derekh Froude's letter of Feb. 7, he states that, given one's acceptance of the theory of evolution, it "follows" that "true morals do not exist, ... that nothing is truly right or wrong." Unfortunately, he fails to indicate what mode of logic he employed to make this great leap.

Evolution is a biological process which operates on the genetic level. Morality, on the other hand, as Froude correctly points out, is "a concept which should be regarded as man made," and is thus found only at a level of consciousness we normally don't attribute to plants, animals, or even young humans, much less to genes.

Many of us find it perfectly compatible to both believe in evolution as a viable scientific theory and to also try (and expect others to try) to live morally good lives. What facillitates this is that, unlike Froude, we don't confuse questions of animal and plant genetics with questions of how you and I, as whole members of a rational species, ought or ought not to treat each other from moment to moment.

Besides, who has the better character-one who can be morally good given our humble place in the universe, or one who can only be good under the threat of an eternal spanking from some mythical Big Daddy in the sky?

Audie L. Alcorn

Philosophy senior

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