Combined with the sharp increase in political polarization, the American loss of a shared moral consensus is similarly perilous.
I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve agonized over this.
It starts from the shrill hollering that occurs when assertive theists and a-theists start to argue. When the argument devolves to a discussion of morality, the a-theist always asserts you do not need to be religious to be moral.
Which is, of course, true…….BUT……without a shared moral framework (which in the US is JudeoChristianity)…..how do we define what is “moral”?
It’s not easy, you know. It takes no wit to decide that you shouldn’t kill or steal. But moral dilemmas are just that; they are choices which present themselves like pretty boxes under the holiday tree; without a moral framework to help you pick the best one, you often find that inside the box you choose is a truly human mess.
And without a moral framework to guide us, the human creature, faced with a moral dilemma……..will more often than not use their own self-interest to break the tie.
And that is not a society that would be pleasant to live in.