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Socrates Exchange: Can one person be better than another?


Throughout American history we have underlined the ideals of ‘equality’  The Declaration of Independence, the Gettysburg Address and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech have all declared  that all men are created equal, but are they really?  In the past people of color, new immigrants and women have been less equal. Gays still fight for equal rights.  Those of a privileged class may have the same rights as the poor, but still enjoy some benefits that the poor can’t. Does that make them better?   Are some people ‘better’ at a job than others due to their sex, education level, physical fitness?  What are we talking about when we say ‘better’ anyway... better than what, better than whom? Who determines what ‘better’ means?


  • Max Latona, Associate Professor of Philosophy at St. Anselm College