16 December 2006

Introducing Jonathan Hubbell

This blog has a new member: my former (and perhaps future) student Jonathan Hubbell. Jonathan is a philosophy major at the University of Texas at Arlington, where I have been a professor since the fall of 1989. Like many people (including me), he fell in love with the discipline almost as soon as he discovered it. Love, of course, isn’t sufficient for being a philosopher (it may not even be necessary), but Jonathan has a genuine aptitude for philosophy. He received the highest score in both my fall 2005 Social and Political Philosophy course and my spring 2006 Ethics course. I believe Jonathan’s plan was to become a medical doctor. If I’m not mistaken, he now wants to become a professor of philosophy, like Mylan and me. But I’ll let Jonathan tell you about how he got where he is and what he plans to do with himself.

You may think it odd that I would invite a student to blog here, but actually I think it will be exciting. Jonathan is just now struggling with some of the things—philosophical and personal—that Mylan and I worked out long ago. I’m not suggesting that Mylan and I won’t change our views or values, but it’s probably less likely that we will than that someone as young as Jonathan will. Jonathan can post on anything he wants. He can put up informational items, as I often do; he can argue; he can write book reviews; he can criticize arguments; he can comment on public affairs. He can even write about personal things, such as his attempt to become a vegetarian. Maybe he’ll share some recipes! I have asked him to describe himself (and his background) in his first post. Stay tuned.

Addendum: I shouldn’t have to say this, but I will. Mylan, Jonathan, and I are different persons. Our views and values overlap to some extent, if only because we share a culture, but they don’t overlap entirely. For example, I’m a conservative, politically speaking. I’m pretty sure neither Mylan nor Jonathan is a conservative. Mylan and I are atheists. I don’t know about Jonathan. I’m a dog person. Mylan is a cat person. I don’t know about Jonathan; maybe he’s a horse person. I like heavy-metal music. Mylan probably likes Lawrence Welk. (Just kidding, Mylan.) The point is, you should not assume that I share Mylan’s or Jonathan’s views, values, beliefs, tastes, preferences, interests, or anything else. I may or may not. It would be a boring blog if we agreed on everything, wouldn’t it? Indeed, if two people agreed on literally everything, one of them would be . . . superfluous.

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