August 10, 2012
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Gary Gutting (Notre Dame) writes for the NY Times here, and then revisits the topic here.
…do these [above] complexities show that philosophers are making a mistake by using the simple restaurant-check example in discussing disagreement? In one sense, no. The simple example is designed merely to illustrate that we often use the following principle: When epistemic peers disagree, they should withhold judgment until the disagreement is resolved. The next and very logical question is, Should this principle apply to much more complex cases, like political disagreements? Making the correct point that these cases are very different does not mean that the same principle shouldn’t apply. What we need is an explanation of why the complexity (values, emotions, ideology, etc.) should allow us to keep holding political views in the face of the disagreement of peers.