Trying Kids as Adults
Today in class we were discussing the fact that a virtue ethicist (specifically Confucius) would likely not try a child as an adult, mostly for one key reason: children are not capable of full moral being, given two factors: (a) they do not have settled traits of character that allow them to see and feel the world in terms of ethics and (b) they are not old enough, even if they have such traits, to understand what it is that they are seeing or feeling. Thus, although it’s necessary to have the right training (which kids are in the process of getting, but don’t have as of yet), it’s not sufficient, because the person needs to understand why these dispositions are admirable ones to have.
Strangely enough, Sam Crane has a post up on this today. I do believe that this might be the third time in two weeks that he’s posted on something the same day that I’ve discussed that same subject in my class. So this is a bit odd. Is it ming? Who knows! Well, we’re done with Confucianism for the semester, so I suppose that ends that. In any case, if you’re in my class, be sure to read Sam’s post on the subject of (not) holding children ethically responsible for their deeds.