What If You're Wrong?

The Very Bad Wizards podcast features two academics who choose a philosophical topic of interest and approach it with a light-hearted, humorous attitude. They discuss current events beforehand, and find themselves at the intersection of liberal academia and skeptical, rational thought. It’s a very informal, friendly convo about interesting things, and I’ve gotten into it.

In the episode “I am Wrong?”, they discuss the Serena Williams controversy at the US Open Final. I am in agreement with Tamlar that the Twitter outrage in Serena’s defense seems unfounded and misguided. Her behavior struck me as puerile and inappropriate, and overshadowed an impressive, deserved win by Naomi Osaka.

Then they discuss Louis CK’s underground return to comedy. Should he be “allowed to perform again” in light of his sexual indiscretions? Essentially, the issue here is one drummed up by odd outrage: has justice been breached? Does he ‘not deserve’ it? Do audiences need to warned? It seems like cultural sensitivity is turned up to the max, and it’s hard to fully understand what good that does anybody.

The bulk of the show is dedicated to a philosophy paper entitled “But I Could Be Wrong”, by George Sher. It’s an appropriate work to study in the current zeitgeist. How do we really know that our moral positions are correct? Is it technically possible? What is our duty in society with regard to opposing beliefs?

Righteousness must be considered. Deeply and seriously. We must stand on something.