What is truth? How can we know what is true? How can we speak with someone who disagrees with us? Module IV invited Audrey Pollnow to speak about moral relativism through the lens of transgender ideology. Audrey studied philosophy at Princeton and Oxford and was President of the Anscombe Society, a student group that advocated for a healthier campus sexual culture. While many people claim to be relativistic, no one is actually a relativist, because one must hold something to be true in order to insist that it be acknowledged as good. To explain this, Audrey presented transgender ideology which holds that gender and biological sex are not intrinsically connected, and because of this, everyone should consider it morally justified for someone to change genders if they wish to do so. Our session on the human person and the unity of body and mind/soul showed us that this claim demands that we deny centuries of human experience as well as scientific data and the moral wisdom arising from them. Helping our friends first desire to face the objectivity of reality and the necessity of the connection of morality to objective reality, can help us find areas of traction with those who have different opinions from us. With trust, kindness and real desire for truth we can have fruitful conversations and dialogue without feeling forced to accept their version of reality or their moral absolutes.
2018 - 2019
Module IV discussed the arguments for relativism and responded to them with the help of speaker Audrey Schaengold and college panelists, Cathy Cano, Alex Remblando, and Maria Hellenbrand. Audrey made clear that although it can be difficult to know the truth, it does not mean that there is no absolute truth or that the truth can’t be known. She and the panelists spoke about the joys and adversities of having counter cultural beliefs and emphasized the need for openness, respect, and appreciation for those who have the courage to rigorously apply reason to their convictions and world view.