The Philosophical Implications of Gambling - Ethics and Metaphilosophy
Ethics - the most applicable form to gambling being "applied ethics", derived from its very nature of its implications on modern society. In recent years applied ethical issues have been subdivided into convenient groups such as medical ethics, business ethics, environmental ethics, sexual ethics, and social ethics. Generally speaking, two features are necessary for an issue to be considered an "applied ethical issue."First, the issue needs to be controversial in the sense that there are significant groups of people both for and against the issue at hand. The second requirement for in issue to be an applied ethical issue is that it must be a distinctly moral issue. So for gambling this is the simplest philosophical debate, as it is most certainly a controversial issue. There are many people in the camps of both for and against the matter.
Whether it is moral is perhaps a more appropriate question. History has proved that in the beginning, gambling was most certainly immoral since it was the framework for monetary gain of individuals who used the gain to finance clearly illegal activities. Today, these organisations do not control the majority, so whether it is more moral than immoral now is the real question. What this filters down to is the issue of are these big casino companies making an honest buck.
The question of ethics in the world of gambling has become even more of a prominent issue with the growth of gambling online.
Metaphilosophy - If I could define "metaphilosophy" for you, I would. But because it is the philosophy of philosophy. Metaphilosophy primarily asks the question, "What is philosophy?" with all its associated questions such as why we should do it, how it should be done, and how it relates to other human activities. The distinction between philosophy and metaphilosophy is frequently difficult to grasp, especially as philosophy includes metaphilosophy. The theory of recollection, mind-body dualism, pre-established harmony, and the transcendental ideality of time are philosophical theories, not metaphilosophical ones.But like any other philosophical theories they reveal or imply positions on the nature of philosophy, its methods, standards, purpose, subject matter, relation to history and action, and so on. So is gambling a metaphilosophical debate? We think it is, have you ever heard of the phrase, 'gambling for the sake of gambling'. We let you decide on this one.
Original author: Chee Yu 5/12/2001 - this document is the sole opinion of the author and should not be taken as reference for debate.
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