The Clackamas print. (Oregon City, Oregon) 1989-2019, October 28, 1998, Page 2, Image 2

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TT h E ClAckAMAS P rínt
Wednesday, October 28, 1998
Truth & Consequences:
In search of an Absolute
I have spoken often in this space
about what is wrong and what is
right. I have made claims of the
most bold and daring sort, all the
while portraying these values as
“moral” and “true.”
reflections of another, “higher”
standard, the yardstick by which
moral codes are judged.
But what do we mean when we
say that the one view is right and
the other wrong? We are admit-
----- ting that there really is
I an Absolute Principle
I behind the codes of the
I cultures—a something
■ that “right” can mean.
IpS Otherwise “right”
I means nothing more
S' than “I like it best this
—" way,” and of course, if
I like punching your face bet­
ter than waving and saying
hello, you are hard pressed to
argue the point on those
Relativism is a sure killer
of a culture. It is when the
hedonism and moral decay of the
Rome finally caught up with her
that she found herself with a crum-
bling societal foundation, and the
barbarians stormed her gates.
Relative values are a personal
scourge as well. Beginning with
only human reason, without any­
thing higher to judge against, ends
in futility and despair. Leonardo
Da Vinci, one of the most brilliant
humanists of history, discovered
this pessimism of humanism at the
end of his life when he realized he
could never find meaning from
pure reason.
The lesson here is that without
a standard, what the late philoso­
pher Francis Schaeffer calls the
“universal,” reason is meaningless
and argument worthless. Without
an Absolute, there is nothing left.
There is no regret at the Holocaust;
there is no rage at the atrocities of
the Middle East and Asia. There
is only, “Eat, drink, and be merry,
for tomorrow we all die.”
But I assert that there is more. I
believe that there is a light of truth,
percieved by Socrates, proclaimed
by Christ, and disseminated by
Paul of Tarsus, by which we can
live our lives. I show you a more
excellent way.
TldE AI t AR of AN
U n I< nown Cod
Copy Editor
The question of
course begs to be
asked, “What is
true?” We certainly
are confronted in
today’s intellectual
world with legions of
adamant viewpoints, all arguing
their own moral superiority and
claiming status as “truth.”
They can’t all be true, can they?
I believe that without an abso­
lute standard of truth there can be
no ethical decisions of any kind,
and reject the kind-hearted yet ill-
conceived notion that all points of
view can be equally accommo­
To some extent, there is a move
in our society to do exactly that—
to reconcile all beliefs as equally
valid, equally true. This partly
arises from a belief that moral prin­
ciples arise from cultural values,
and thus are relative to each soci­
This claim is a reversal of the
Aristotle’s hierarchy of the pur­
pose of knowledge—from Truth to
Morality to Technique. What is
true about the universe leads to the
formulation of moral principles;
then (and only then) can the prac­
tical use of knowledge be wisely
A collection of ideas do not sud­
denly become “morality” simply
because a majority of people in a
given group decide that they hap­
pen to like them. Rather the ethics
professed by a society should be
Pay Now, Educate Later
The first week of November is
coming upon us fast. In the month
of October, Rock the Vote regis­
tered approximately 400 new vot­
ers among the students on the
ition program.
This is a safe way for families to
pay now for college tuition with a
plan that will protect them against
future college tuition
increases. The family
he acrec
I will be guaranteed that
| the tuition they pay now
I will be all that they pay
I no matter how much the
■I costs have gone up.
The drawback
to this plan is that if the
tuition costs raise faster
Clackamas campus.
than the interest earned by
Now is the time to
the state on the collected
translate those 400
funds, they will come up
votes into action.
short when it is time to use
There are a number
them. The Legislature pos­
of important ballot
sibly would have to pay for
measures that concern
the difference, and this
college students across the state; would cause budget cuts in other
one of them is measure 55, which areas.
would expand the state
Also, this is a plan that benefits
government’s financial guarantee the middle class—it probably
to a state-run prepaid college ta­ would not be a financial aid to low-
TI- ie P ro F
Editor in Chief:
Robert Schoenberg (x2576)
The Clackamas Print aims to report the
news in an honest, unbiased, profes­
sional manner. The opinions expressed
in The Clackamas Print do not
neccesarily reflect those of the student
body, college administration, its faculty,
or The Clackamas Print advertisers.
Products and services advertised in The
Clackamas Print are not neccesarily en­
dorsed by anyone associated with The
Clackamas Print. The advertising rate
is $4.75 per column inch. All signed let­
ters to the editor should be 300 words
or less and will be considered for publi­
cation if submitted by 1 pm the Friday
prior to publication. The Clackamas
Print is a weekly publication and is dis­
tributed every Wednesday except dur­
ing Finals week.
Feature + A&E Editor:
Jeremy Stallwood
Sports Editor:
John Thorbum
Business Manager:
Kristina Brooks
Copy Editor:
income families.
This measure directly influences
the ability of families to pay for
college in the future. It is an im­
portant decision for voters, who
must weigh all the outcomes of ei­
ther its passage or defeat. For our
400 new voters, it offers an oppor­
tunity to cast their ballot and make
a difference—a good proposal to
cut their teeth on.
Staff Writers:
Kara Alexis
Kevin Naumann
Angie Daschel
James Khosravi
Mandi Linstrom
Eric Eatherton
Staff Photographers:
Joel Shempert
Photo Editor:
Toni McMichael
Amy Parrish
Timothy A. Bell
Graphic Design:
Linda Vogt
Karl Katzke
Advertising Design:
Megan Oldenstadt
JoAnne Gale
Joel "Israel" Gunderson
Leah Chapin