Being a good person today requires thought and work. The moral intuitions that evolved during many millennia of living in small, face-to-face societies are no longer adequate. Our actions now — or our failure to act — affect people all over the world and people who will live on this planet for many centuries to come.
That means we face moral choices all the time. Global problems like climate change, extreme poverty, the cruel confinement of billions of animals in factory farms, overfishing of the oceans, and of course the pandemic raise complex questions about how we should spend our money, how much of it we should give to help others, what we should eat, and how we should use our abilities to influence others and our governments. Moral codes written thousands of years ago are silent about climate change, and usually say nothing, or very little, about protecting the environment, the treatment of animals, and how we should exercise our responsibilities as citizens in a democracy.