Cafe Inquiry

Tuesday, January 22nd 2013 at 7:00 pm
Tuesday, January 22nd 2013 at 9:00 pm
Hill Center DC, 921 Pennsylvania Ave SE (Eastern Market Metro), Washington, DC 20003

Note Location: We will be in Walt Whitman Room. Entrance is on 9th St SE. Elevator access available. Overflow room available in case of higher turnout to ensure all attendees receive adequate opportunities to participate.

Cafe Inquiry is our monthly casual get-together to meet people and discuss topics of science and humanism.

This month's discussion: What is Justice?

From Plato’s Academy to Harvard’s lecture halls, the nature of justice has been a fundamental philosophical question. Divine command theories do not satisfy secular humanists/atheists, and may even be dangerous. Some embrace the Kantian principle of the Categorical Imperative and argue that justice is best implemented from abstract moral principles applied equally and impartially to all.  Feminist philosophers offer a different perspective that suggests empathy and compassion, or an “ethic of care,” should have priority. They account for the particular circumstances of the vulnerable and therefore focus on just outcomes rather than just intent. What should be considered when determining justice: equal outcomes or equal application of law? Should there be a balance between the two? What kinds of problems arise from each of these approaches? What other models of justice are feasible?  Would a just society be desirable if it were possible? Or would there be unforeseen consequences that would make such an outcome inconceivable?

We are also planning to go out for food and/or drinks afterwards. Free and open to the public.

Interested in leading a discussion or have someone to recommend? Please contact us at dc[at]