Gratitude toward Veterans

Gratitude toward Veterans : Why Americans Should Not Be Very Grateful to Veterans

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Veterans are celebrated with speeches, statues, memorials, holidays, and affirmative action. They are lavishly praised in public gatherings and private conversations. Contradicting this widespread attitude, Stephen Kershnar's Gratitude toward Veterans: A Philosophical Explanation of Why American Should Not Be Very Grateful to Veterans argues that U.S. citizens should not be very grateful to more

Product details

  • Hardback | 158 pages
  • 157.48 x 231.14 x 17.78mm | 385.55g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 6 tables
  • 0739185780
  • 9780739185780

Review quote

Kershnar's challenge of these current practices is timely, topical, and of great practical importance given that the practices he criticizes will, if he is right, have pernicious political consequences. His tightly argued, rigorous, and admirably lucid and readable book is an excellent example of what applied philosophy should be. Journal of Value Inquiry Gratitude toward Veterans is a thorough-going, tightly-argued book that not only answers the question of why gratitude to veterans is inappropriate, but breaks new ground in the philosophical analysis of gratitude and presents nuanced normative ethical arguments on the wrongness of the military draft. Though some might find the conclusions about civilian gratitude for military service disheartening, Stephen Kershnar states his arguments and answers to objections are as forcefully, as exhaustively, and as clearly as the counterarguments and objections he raises. -- George Schedler, Southern Illinois University While many will have an immediate feeling of sharp disagreement to Stephen Kershnar's Gratitude Toward Veterans: Why Americans Should Not Be Very Grateful to Veterans, it proves difficult to point out just where his logic has gone awry. This is characteristic of Kershnar's usual style: lucid and creative arguments that challenge orthodox views to reconsider what should (or should not) be taken for granted. Despite the fact that I find myself unable to accept Kershnar's conclusions, I regard this as an important book. This is the book that those who think that society at-large owes a debt of gratitude to its veterans must refute. Anyone who takes seriously our relationship to those who serve in the military should read this volume. -- Bradley J. Strawser, assistant professor of Philosophy, Defense Analysis Department, Naval Postgraduate School Steve Kershnar has a well-earned reputation for producing clever, surprisingly plausible arguments in favor of positions that most people (including most philosophers) would dismiss out of hand. This volume, replete with concise and clearly-marked positive arguments, objections, and replies, claims centrally that people should not ordinarily be grateful to veterans because their military service is no more altruistic than the work that is done by other citizens. Kershnar defends this position with sophisticated, but accessible, arguments that will leave most readers either reluctantly convinced or wondering why they are not. -- Theodore Everett, SUNY Geneseoshow more

About Stephen Kershnar

Stephen Kershnar is professor of philosophy at the State University of New York at Fredonia and is also an more

Table of contents

Chapter 1: The American People are Very Grateful to Veterans Chapter 2: Collective Gratitude Chapter 3: We Should Not Be Very Grateful to Veterans Chapter 4: We Should Not Be Very Grateful to Draftees Chapter 5: Against the Draft Chapter 6: In the Future, U.S. Citizens Should Avoid Being Grateful to Veterans Chapter 7: The Duty to Obey Military Orders is Surprisingly Weak Chapter 8: Lacking Gratitude and Virtue Appendix 1: Why it is Bad to be Very Grateful to Someone Who Does Not Merit It Appendix 2: Gratitude Toward the State Should Flow Through to the Military Appendix 3: Some Colleagues' Objectionsshow more