Debating Same-sex Marriage; The Good Life
The Season 1 finale focuses on same-sex marriage and the link between law and morality. If principles of justice depend on the moral or intrinsic worth of the ends that rights serve, how should we deal with the fact that people hold different ideas and conceptions of what is good? Students address this question in a heated debate about whether same-sex marriage should be legal. Can we settle the matter without discussing the moral permissibility of homosexuality or the purpose of marriage?
In Part 2, Professor Sandel asserts that government can't be neutral on difficult moral questions, such as same-sex marriage and abortion, and asks why we shouldn't deliberate all issues—including economic and civic concerns—with that same moral and spiritual aspiration. In his final lecture, Professor Sandel eloquently makes the case for a new politics of the common good. Engaging, rather than avoiding, the moral convictions of our fellow citizens may be the best way of seeking a just society.