Is relative ethics coherent?

Does the notion of “relative ethics” make sense within the context of the western ethics? There are some attempts to develop “ethical relativism”, even though it is not clear what is relativistic about them. One would be a kind of factual claim: different people, different groups, different cultures have different principles which they consider as “morally good”. This does not make for ethical relativism. The issue still remains: are these principles also ethically good? That is to say, one undertakes a ‘normative’ enquiry in order to find out whether all these principles are also morally acceptable. The second would be to come up with a moral norm that is ‘relative’ to some person or group. Any examination would very quickly lead to the conclusion that, in so far as it is a norm, it is universalizable even if the domain of objects appears restricted. (That is because all ‘universal’ laws specify the domain of objects, whether implicitly or explicitly, where they are applicable. The ‘relativistic’ norms appear relativistic because they specify the domain explicitly.) In other words, no one has been able to come up with any coherent explication of what ‘relativistic ethics’ means. (According to me, it is impossible to do so when we speak of normative ethics.)

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