A trolley is about to turn five powerless victims. However, a lever could divert the trolley toward only one helpless person. Should the bystander pull the lever? Would it be murder if he pulled it?
Every Monday at 5:30, the Philosophy Club meets in the humanities building (room 131) to discuss mind bending topics, such as the Trolley Problem phrased above. Together, they examine things like the nature of knowledge, reality, existence and ethical behavior.
“I enjoy Philosophy club because it is a comfortable place to talk about whatever I want,” club member Brandon King says. “We talk about things that change us and benefit us forever.”
Some questions that the club has already analyzed this semester are, “What is fungibility and how does it relate to me and to Batman?” “Do things have intrinsic value, or do we just assign them value?” and, “What is the value of fear and sorrow, and should we trust art to make us feel those emotions?”
Questions like these are not just flitting diversions. In fact, their answers sculpt all human behavior.
“The basis of every decision we make is based in philosophy – whether we know it or not,” club president Alexander Dirbidge. “After all, ‘philosophy’ literally means the love of knowledge.”
Philosophical decision making impacts society on an enormous scale. For example, philosophical innovation led to the birth of the American Constitution and influences the way the American government is maintained. Because of this, philosophy majors are often valued in important leadership positions. They have a learned ability to make decisions and be reliable leaders.
Philosophical topics even find their way into some of the world’s most popular movies, like The Truman Show, The Matrix, and Blade Runner. The Philosophy Club regularly views movies like these in the library. The entire student body is invited to participate in these, and in the regular club meetings.