Morality and Super Heroes

Français : Icone pour Vallect, logiciel libre ...

Français : Icone pour Vallect, logiciel libre de lecture au collège ( (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


In a superhero movie, the hero is considered moral while the villain takes on the role of immoral. Let’s first define what is moral in this particular context. A proper definition would be “principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior.” Being moral here stands for protecting the people under your authority, whether they like your vigilance or not. Essentially, the superheroes have to distinguish between the right and the wrong. We’re talking about fictional characters here so we can freely look at things from a moviegoer’s perspective and not an absolutist perspective. So what is morality? Well, whatever is right from the point of view of the audience. If a villain is setting up an explosive charge under a bridge at peak traffic to mass murder — it’s immoral. A superhero discharging the explosive and saving everybody is the right thing — it’s moral. If we just stress from the moviegoer’s perspective then we can clearly define what sort of emotion we’re discussing here when echoing the word morality.

Source Essay here.

Civil War

On the morning of February 27, 1937, which began cold and gray, a few hundred Americans waited to storm a hill southeast of Madrid, near the Jarama River. They were volunteer soldiers, drawn to Spain by a noble cause. Germany belonged to Hitler, and Italy to Mussolini, but there was still a chance that the Spanish Republic—governed by an unstable coalition of liberals, socialists, and anarchists—could fight off a cabal of right-wing generals who called themselves Nationalists. The previous year, the Nationalists had tried to take over the country, touching off a civil war. Leftist volunteers from around the world flocked to the Republican side, seeing the war as a struggle between tyranny and freedom that transcended national boundaries. The fight felt almost holy—“like the feeling you expected to have and did not have when you made your first communion,” Ernest Hemingway wrote, in “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” The Americans had been brought to Spain by Comintern, the worldwide Communist organization, but, to disguise their allegiance, the troops had been given an irreproachably non-Communist name: the Abraham Lincoln battalion.

Entrenched at the top of the hill, behind a shot-up olive grove, were Moorish troops, flown in from Spain’s protectorate in Morocco in planes furnished by Hitler and Mussolini. The Moors were known to be especially formidable. “It was terrifying to watch the uncanny ability of the Moorish infantry to exploit the slightest fold in the ground which could be used for cover, and to make themselves invisible,” a volunteer later recalled. “It is an art that only comes to a man after a lifetime spent with a rifle in his hand.”

From The New Yorker.

Porn on brains – 2

English: A advert banner of a electric (instal...

English: A advert banner of a electric (installation , …) company named “Porn”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A recent post on porn and brains argued that porn was messing with the brains of young men. Dr. Marty Klein counters those claims in this recently published piece:

In eSkeptic for April 13, 2016, Philip Zimbardo and Gary Wilson outlined the many ways that they believe “porn is messing with your manhood.” I personally know Phil Zimbardo to be a compassionate and energetic man who is generally positive about sexuality (I don’t know his coauthor Mr. Wilson). And everyone knows that Dr. Zimbardo is a world-famous social scientist, but in my opinion this article is short on facts that are reliable and relevant. Before we get to that, however, let’s note that we agree on several things. Yes, a majority of adolescent American males look at pornography. Yes, some of them report sexual difficulties. And yes, some of them report a compulsive quality to their attachment to porn viewing. Finally, there’s plenty to be concerned about when an entire generation of young men get a substantial amount of their sex education from Internet porn.

Read the article at eSkeptic.



VIU presents: leaders on learning

 Dr. SteveVIU Presents:

Leaders on Learning

“The Leaders on Learning Series is a new offering coming out of the Successful Student Learning Initiative – now in its second year supported and led by the Office of the Provost. There are 11 sessions over the next several months that showcase VIU leaders and their perspectives on learning as related to the topics that surfaced during the initiative. The one-hour sessions include the leader sharing a story, personal beliefs or a learning experience – and then an open conversation takes place on the topic. All sessions are video-captured and will be made available for all of the campus community.”

Series information here.

Watch Dr. Steve Lane’s contribution here. (Yes. I am the proud father of this contributor.)

Porn and brains.

Finding a needle in a haystack would be easier than finding an adolescent male who hasn’t seen online porn. Surveys indicate the average boy watches roughly two hours of porn every week with porn viewing becoming common by age 15.


The most popular porn site—PornHub—reported that the average Millennial porn session lasts 9 minutes, while the average age young people have sex for the first time is 17 years old. This means the average boy has had about 1,400 porn sessions prior to having real life sex. So why aren’t more people asking what kind of effects porn is having on these young viewers?

Read the piece here.