Essay on Ethical Bias In Reasoning

Personal Bias and Reasoning

We can have personal biases for and against various things, based on our conscious or subconscious emotional attitude towards personal involvement with associated issues. Having a bias does not mean our opinion or the facts we have about it are invalid, no matter how much the opposition might declare we are too biased to be taken seriously. In matters of voting we can recuse ourselves if want to admit that we are not impartial due to personal private involvement creating a prejudice (like in public offices). This essay is about the times when bias can be considered fair. Emotional involvement should actually be treated logically separate from the validity of arguments. I think most of the problems with logic have to do with what the terms are, and if people can agree on what the terms are; and the second problem is the values of the logic equations.

It may not be the fault of the product if they have been unethically created or used, and yet a poison is a poison; in bio-genetics issues of augments and mutants directly links ethics with science, much as money and art are connected in an unholy alliance.

Working for a company and having a particular maybe scientific mindset does have a type of bias. People involved with Healthcare have a bias towards voting for people that are going to say that they will support healthcare. Jews will be biased against Nazis, it does not mean that the biased prejudice is unjust.

We are all biased in some way, as our perspective is relative to our experience and subjective human mind-sets. Bias seems to be okay as long as we can recognize it, and admit to it so people can try to be more objectively fair towards more people, and disregard unwelcome emotions if they can. Emotion can be used as persuasion for some, but emotion can equally turn against the user when turning others off. A slave could be biased against slavery because they were abused and neglected. Despite their hateful bias they might be excused their mental prejudice; and we do not use their harsh attitude against slavery to discount the abolition movement.  

So the issue of bias becomes whether the bias is clouding our judgment or not ; which is highly debatable. I don’t think that just having a bias should dismiss somebody from an argument; for example hiring a lawyer does not ban them from the court-room just because they are biased by their pay to act on behalf of their client. Is passion always irrational? Or are there cases where allowing emotion makes sense? So a bias on a particular subject could in fact actually help to bring facts to light involved with it in , and actually be the opposite of discounting the Merit of the argument.

We see Capt Kirk doing this for example when he says something like “I know its against the Prime Directive, but dammit im doing it because im human.” and Spock goes “highly illogical”. and of course later it would be argued that it is not illogical knowing that a human might care about specific emotional issues of ethics more than rules. It is logical that Kirk would save people he cares about, because he is prone to that biased reasoning that is not logical to people who value general ethical orders more than personal particular life-saving ethics.


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