Essay, Pages 2 (458 words)
“What is wrong with killing, when it is wrong, may not be so much that it is unjust, violating the right to life, but, frequently that it is callous and contrary to the virtue of charity” (Hursthouse 1999, 6). I choose Abortion as the selected topic for my Focus paper. Abortion is and will always be a moral dilemma because of the issues of when life actual begins, individual rights and the rights of women. According to Utilitarian’s; “Something is right if it brings about the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people; something is wrong if it does or would tend to bring about greater harm (unhappiness) to a greater number of people” (Mundia, 2005).
Virtue Theory, Care Ethicist, and Duty Ethics would all conclude that abortion is morally right and also morally wrong.
Immanuel Kant, a German philosopher who is regarded one of the best philosophers of the 18th century and of all time. Kant believed that human beings occupy a special place in creation and morality.
From his perspective he could arguably be against abortion (Sullivan, 1989, p.1). Kant’s theory is part of the Deontological ethics-based ethics – that focuses on the rightness or wrongness of intentions or motives behind action such as respect for rights, duties, or principles, as opposed to the rightness or wrongness of the consequences of those actions (Consequentialism).
Kant believes you should never base your actions on the consequences because they are never that clear. To illustrate the point, one could imagine a madman with a gun intent on murdering a random member of the public.
If, by chance, his target turns out to be an even more evil individual who was intending to slaughter thousands of innocent children, our first madman who does ‘good’ by shooting him, however there is no doubt that this does not show good will which is for Kant the only thing in the world which can be considered entirely good (Sullivan, 1989, p.149).
The Categorical Imperative has two formulations. The first formulation (or first maxim) called the universal law formulation is based on the idea that a moral maxim must have universality: Act only according to that maxim whereby you can and at the same time will that it should become a universal law; Kant divides the duties imposed by this formulation into four subsets: Perfect and Imperfect duties and duties to ourselves and to others. According to his reasoning, we first have a perfect duty not to act by maxims that result in logical contradictions when we attempt to universalize them. Duty ethics, which is the duty to act only by maxims that we would desire to be universalized. In simple words, imperfect duties are those duties in which the maxim