Ethics: Applications to Human Life and death

  • Created by: OllyB18
  • Created on: 07-04-21 10:39
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  • Applications to Human Life and Death (Ethics)
    • Abortion
      • NML
        • Aquinas = a rational soul is present at 40-90 days after conception
          • In his summa theologica he states that whoever causes the death of a foetus is guilty of homocide
            • The catolic church forbids aboriton at any reason, through the DDE; e.g. if a woman's life was in danger by pregnancy it would be immoral to abort as it goes against means end condition
              • Possible counter: Pojman example of cancerous uterus- abortion would pass all DDE principles
      • Situation Ethics
        • In support for abortion in almost all situations where it is the most loving thing to do
          • Scenario of the 3000 jewish babies aborted by a doctor before going to a concentration camp- saving 6000 lives in doing so= most loving thing to do so is acceptable
          • Scenario of arizona women who may have defective baby because she took therlidomide- she husband took her to sweden to get it aborted= fletcher satted this was brave, loving and right
      • Virtue Ethics
        • Aristotle believes in ensoulment: 40 days for men and 90 days for women
          • He says in his politics that if parents have too many children; abortion should be brought about 'before sense and life have begun
        • He says in his politics that if parents have too many children; abortion should be brought about 'before sense and life have begun
        • Hursthouse explains that abortion is a moral issue that has little to do with 'rights' and 'rules'- these do not mean youre being virtuous
          • The reason should not be trivial unless its morally evil
    • Embryo Research
      • NML
        • FOR
          • ER could be seen to promote the primary precept ‘live in an ordered society’ as such research promises to provide treatment and/or cures to debilitating genetically inherited and medical conditions (Huntington’s disease, Alzheimer’s
          • (Proportionalism) If theft is sometimes allowed, then why not lying, or indeed, ER?  it makes sense to use otherwise discarded embryos in research which will have many future benefits.
        • Against
          • to deliberately end life as a means to improving the quality or extending the lives of others is wrong it is a back action which is used as a means to a good end. This goes against the doctrine of double effect
      • Situation Ethics
        • If emrbyoes were jsut created for research then it would not be loving as they would have been created to be destroyed
        • Embryonic research could potentially save millions which would make it morally justifiable
        • No guidelines exist about it- hard for situationists to come to a conclusion
      • Virue Ethics
        • MaclIntyre- IVF leads to a surplus of embryos which would be destroyed otherwise- practical wisdom suggests that the most pragmatic and compssionaite thhing to do is use them in research to benefit humanity as a whole
        • Aristotle: 'while it is desirable to secure what is good for the individual, to do so in the case of people is more sublime'= embryo research that can help millions then it would be virtuous
        • Against: There are alternatives without using embryos- it is involves more practical wisdom to do that (seems unfair to take life away for the sake of research)


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