Peter Singer, the most famous bioethicist on the planet, is known for his extreme but consistent views of utilitarianism. Moral absolutes do not exist, so we should do the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Consistently, Singer has publicly defended abortion, euthanasia without consent, and even infanticide -- arguing that parents should have the rights to kill newborns if they wish.
But at a recent ethics conference at Oxford, Singer acknowledged that his views are not adequate for certain contemporary challenges. They can’t make people live for the good of others and the physical world. He admitted that his current position was in flux, and even that he had regrets about not believing in God.
C. S. Lewis, himself once an atheist warned, “Really, a young Atheist cannot guard his faith too carefully. Dangers lie in wait for him on every side.” I hope Peter Singer lets his guard down soon.
This commentary originally aired on June 17, 2011.