Attitudes to War
There are five conditions for declaring a 'Just War'.
- Proper Authority- declared by PA (eg. elected government)
- Just Cause- Defensive, preventing damage that would be 'lasting, grave and certain' (Catechism of the Catholic Church: para 2309) not just self defence- defending friendly nation or innocent people- right intentions- achieve a just goal
- Last Resort- Other paths have been exhuasted
- Achievable Aim- Reasonable chance of success
- Proportionality- harm caused mustn't be as bad as harm trying to prevent
Conditions to fight justly:
- Discrimination- combatants & civilians- not just to deliberatly target civilians
- Proportionaility- advantage gained by attack must outweigh harm caused to civilians (individual attacks)
- A holy war- people believe God is on their side
Attitudes to War
- Christianity teaches- peace is ultimate goal
Pacifists are opposed to all violence.
- War is wrong under any circumstance
- All disputes should be settled peacefully
- Violence goes against Jesus's teachings of 'Love thy neighbour' and 'Turn the other cheek' (Matthew 5:38-48)
"Put your sword back in its place... for all who draw the sword will die by the sword" Matthew 26:52)
- Conscientious objector- People who refuse to fight in wars
- The Religious Soceity of Friends (The Quakers)- Christian demonination- opposed war under all circumstances
Punishment can have various aims.
- Deterrence- Bad punishment- put people off commiting crime
- Protection- Protect society from dangerous criminals
- Reform & rehabilitation- Change criminals- won't reoffend prepare for return to society
- Retributiion- Criminals 'pay' for what they have done
- Religious people- criminals treated mercifully- encourage reforn & rehabilitation
Capital punishment isn't used much nowadays.
- FOR- Better deterrent & prevent more crimes from that person
- AGAINST- many murders- aren't premeditated so murders won't be thinking about concequences- not a better deterrent, no chance to reform & can be proved innocent- too late
- Many christians- oppose- no chance to reform or show mercy
- Set aside 'an eye for an eye' in the name of love & forgiveness
- Many Christians in USA are FOR CA- protects innocent
Social injustice means not treating everyone fairly.
- Groups- unfairly disadvantaged- don't get same oppertunities
- Uneven distribution of benefits (eg. wealth)
- First type- discrimination on grounds of race, gender, religion, social class, poverty, age or disability
- Second type- some are very wealthy while some can't meet basic needs (food, shelter & warmth etc)
- Religious- see it as their duty to fight social injustice
Social justice is based on the idea of human dignity.
- Most christians believe- all people deserve to be treated fairly & with repect
- Based on belief- human dignity- all human life is valuable regardless of race, gender
"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him: male and femaled he created them" Genesis 1:27
- Consciousness, self knowledge, reason & free will- godly qualities bestowed only on humans
Dignity and equality doesn't mean we're all the same.
- God blesses each individiual with own ability, personality, talents & ambitions
- Social justice- not about making sure everyone has the same stuff & does the same thing- about making sure nothing prevents someone from using their 'god given' talents
- Many campaigns- aim to reduce social injustice- focus on wealth- poverty- big stumbling block to achievement
- High taxes for people on high incomes, scholarships for poor but gifted students & free access to healthcare & education