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Old November 28th, 2012, 11:52 AM   #1

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Some thoughts regarding the suppression of human life


Situation A: An old man, ill and close to death, living alone with no friends/family/human relations. He doesn't work nor does anything meaningful, he just survives in his last years of life.

Situation B: A young mother, healthy and beautiful, with a happy family and lots of social relationships, who works as a cancer researcher.

Would killing A be comparable to killing B? Or would the murder of A be different from the murder of B (excluding, for the sake of the argument, the relevance of the motivations for the murders)? If so, why?

(The main point of this thread isn't murder btw, but i'll follow after i'll get some replies)

Last edited by The merchant of Venice; November 28th, 2012 at 12:02 PM.
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Old November 28th, 2012, 11:54 AM   #2
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The day we reduce human life to a simple matter of who can contribute most to society, that day humanity cease to exist as anything special above other primates.
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Old November 28th, 2012, 11:59 AM   #3

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The day we reduce human life to a simple matter of who can contribute most to society, that day humanity cease to exist as anything special above other primates.
It's not only that. Note that I underlined the fact that B has more relations, thus killing her would case more pain to more people
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:08 PM   #4

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In theory the murder/death etc of one is as bad as another, they are both equally valid.

However if it was in some 'Natural Disaster' and I had the opportunity to only rescue one (for certain) I would rescue the young women not simply because it would cause more pain (which is a fair point) but because the older man has 'lived' his life the younger women not only has more to live for but has longer to live.
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:10 PM   #5

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In theory the murder/death etc of one is as bad as another, they are both equally valid.

However if it was in some 'Natural Disaster' and I had the opportunity to only rescue one (for certain) I would rescue the young women not simply because it would cause more pain (which is a fair point) but because the older man has 'lived' his life the younger women not only has more to live for but has longer to live.
Wouldn't that mean that killing A is a bit less worse than killing B?
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:26 PM   #6

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Wouldn't that mean that killing A is a bit less worse than killing B?
I've fudged the question in that 'I am' not killing anyone but rather deciding who I am going to save which is slightly different.

The death of B would be the greater 'tragedy' than A so does that mean I am putting different value on each life? perhaps.

But I would view the killing of either as 'equal crimes'.
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:30 PM   #7

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The death of B would be the greater 'tragedy' than A so does that mean I am putting different value on each life? perhaps.

But I would view the killing of either as 'equal crimes'.
I don't see why though, since you indirectly admit that the life of one is more worth saving, and thus living, than the life of the other
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:33 PM   #8

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I don't see why though, since you indirectly admit that the life of one is more worth saving, and thus living, than the life of the other
But is 'saving' different to 'killing'?
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:38 PM   #9

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But is 'saving' different to 'killing'?
Yes but as you said, one death would case more general pain than another, thus one murder would be more harmful, thus there's a recognizeble difference between the two murders (assuming the motivations for the two murders are the same)
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Old November 28th, 2012, 12:40 PM   #10
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Equivalent in hard financial terms of what each person can bring to society? Probably not.

Legally equivalent? Yes, but they might be treated differently by the courts.

Morally equivalent? Absolutely.

Is it morally wrong to exploit an animal but not a human being because it can't provide as much in terms of social benefit as the human? Not in the slightest.
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