" Of course, combined ethics and morality is preferred to the absence of either one. "
I don't separate the two except that ethics
is something that develops from modern experience while morality stems from the kind of thinking that was formed when human societies did not even know what a rainbow is.
Action is immoral when a person proceeds with an action that is known to cause actual serious damage and there is not a good reason...
so it is immoral to live other than optimally.
For some, "damage" can meanas little as that their demands to be the boss of the personal choices of other persons...were not met... whensomeone exercised someone's personal choice.
What I mean by "damage" is that actual disinforming or disintegration is caused in an action where it was unethical to do so.
Sexual activity certainly is a time when "damage" could be done...hence our longstanding moral code governing its conduct. However, there are many misbehaviors that should be ranked on a "morality scale."
Rank these for immorality, most to least IMmoral?
a) view pictures of humans doing what humans like to do
b) deny funding via the United Nations for sex education in developing nations, so people run around not knowing what causes sexually transmitted diseases...as a report on NPR told,
many 12-year-old girls were being raped in a poor country because the rumor ran rampant that AIDS could be cured by having sex with a virgin.
c) everybody drink lots of vodka, even while raising kids and overseeing creation of workers' paradise!
d) keep women illiterate and their faces behind veils
e) have sex (or "non-sex") with someone not your
actual married partner
Some persons might rank these
Most IMmoral to least IMmoral: e-a-d-c-b
(possibly fundamentalist Muslims, Doctrinaire Communists and fundamentalist Christians)
While some persons would rank these
Most IMmoral to least IMmoral: b-d-c-e-a
(possibly moderate Liberals, American Workers,
and some scientists)