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A Question of Morality...

ConservativePolitico
Posts: 8,210
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12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?
M.Torres
Posts: 3,626
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12/29/2011 12:00:37 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
: At 11/28/2011 1:28:24 PM, BlackVoid wrote:
: M. Torres said it, so it must be right.

I'm an Apatheistic Ignostic. ... problem? ;D

I believe in the heart of the cards. .:DDO Duelist:.
ConservativePolitico
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12/29/2011 12:13:50 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/29/2011 12:00:37 AM, M.Torres wrote:


To be quite honest I've never watched or played Metal Gear Solid haha this must just be one of those common questions/situations that people use.

But my question still stands. I'm curious as to people's answers.
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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12/29/2011 12:21:55 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
I personally would not, but it would most likely be justified for the other people to kill my baby.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
Ren
Posts: 7,102
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12/29/2011 12:53:43 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM, ConservativePolitico wrote:
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?

No.

For several reasons:

1. Killing the child is counterintuitive.

It is more likely than not that killing the child will generate some kind of noise or commotion.

2. There are better options.

A moving target is infinitely more difficult to find. If I were responsible for an infant and I were hiding from a group of people (which are easier to spot than one or two people, noise notwithstanding), then I would take my chances and find a place to hide the baby, because the baby would be more likely to distract them from the group if he or she started crying, and they would be more interested in the entire group than just the baby itself. If I were to make the baby especially difficult to reach, then it diminishes the chances that they'd even go through the effort of getting the baby, rather than finding where everyone else is.

3. I don't care for btches.

If the people I'm with are worth a damn, then they would be just as interested as I in preserving the child's life. It wouldn't even occur to them to kill the child, and would try to stop me if I decided to resort of such lengths. Therefore, they would be the sort of people that would try to defend themselves like me, especially if they're going to stay in one place. If they don't intend to fight, then we need to get moving anyway. If they intend to sit in one place and refuse to fight, then yes, I value my child's life more than theirs.

4. I will turn on some crazies.

If they decide that they want to kill my child to preserve their lives irreverent of my opinions or interests, then I will fight them.

To the death.
Maikuru
Posts: 9,112
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12/29/2011 1:05:43 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM, ConservativePolitico wrote:
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?

Replace shack with bus and you have the EXACT plot of the M.A.S.H. finale. Is that where you got this from? Anyway, the woman ended up killing the baby (and saving Alan Alda, thank god).

I'm not sure many people could or would make the conscious decision to kill their child to save themselves. I don't think the other people factor into it much; if you tell someone to kill their child or 5 strangers will die, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't do it. The woman on M.A.S.H. did it almost involuntarily out of fear, which is probably the only way this would happen.
"You assume I wouldn't want to burn this whole place to the ground."
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Lasagna
Posts: 2,440
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12/30/2011 1:34:39 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Catch-22s are not a good gauge of moral consequence. If some blood-thirsty murderor is giving you a choice to kill one person or another, then there isn't much opportunity for you to make any moral choices. There is morality in everything we do, yet much of the discussion lies solely in absurd examples.
Rob
Jon1
Posts: 314
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12/31/2011 7:25:52 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/29/2011 12:53:43 AM, Ren wrote:
At 12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM, ConservativePolitico wrote:
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?

No.

For several reasons:

1. Killing the child is counterintuitive.

It is more likely than not that killing the child will generate some kind of noise or commotion.

2. There are better options.

A moving target is infinitely more difficult to find. If I were responsible for an infant and I were hiding from a group of people (which are easier to spot than one or two people, noise notwithstanding), then I would take my chances and find a place to hide the baby, because the baby would be more likely to distract them from the group if he or she started crying, and they would be more interested in the entire group than just the baby itself. If I were to make the baby especially difficult to reach, then it diminishes the chances that they'd even go through the effort of getting the baby, rather than finding where everyone else is.

3. I don't care for btches.

If the people I'm with are worth a damn, then they would be just as interested as I in preserving the child's life. It wouldn't even occur to them to kill the child, and would try to stop me if I decided to resort of such lengths. Therefore, they would be the sort of people that would try to defend themselves like me, especially if they're going to stay in one place. If they don't intend to fight, then we need to get moving anyway. If they intend to sit in one place and refuse to fight, then yes, I value my child's life more than theirs.

4. I will turn on some crazies.

If they decide that they want to kill my child to preserve their lives irreverent of my opinions or interests, then I will fight them.

To the death.

Indeed, that's the only option you have with the alive baby.
PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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12/31/2011 11:16:06 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM, ConservativePolitico wrote:
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?:

Falsum in uno, falsum in omnibus... In other words, it's a false dichotomy.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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12/31/2011 4:30:36 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/30/2011 1:34:39 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Catch-22s are not a good gauge of moral consequence. If some blood-thirsty murderor is giving you a choice to kill one person or another, then there isn't much opportunity for you to make any moral choices. There is morality in everything we do, yet much of the discussion lies solely in absurd examples.

The point is that an absurd example allows us to focus more on the principles involved than on the situation since there is no easy answer. Examples like this allow us to gauge the actual scope of the problem more easily.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
Lasagna
Posts: 2,440
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12/31/2011 8:05:40 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/31/2011 4:30:36 PM, socialpinko wrote:
At 12/30/2011 1:34:39 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Catch-22s are not a good gauge of moral consequence. If some blood-thirsty murderor is giving you a choice to kill one person or another, then there isn't much opportunity for you to make any moral choices. There is morality in everything we do, yet much of the discussion lies solely in absurd examples.

The point is that an absurd example allows us to focus more on the principles involved than on the situation since there is no easy answer. Examples like this allow us to gauge the actual scope of the problem more easily.

Your confusing absurdity with magnitude. As Plato did in The Republic, he sought to construct a state to demonstrate justice in the individual, where justice is more subtle and not as easily discerned. I often use extremes to demonstrate my points for this very reason. But we are not increasing magnitude here, we are simply creating more confusion than we started with. Natural situations rarely exist where someone would have to, say, murder a baby to save x lives. When this does occur it is only because a human mind is artificially creating the situation, I.e, a murderor is creating a sick game or otherwise troublesome scenario just to create this moral "dilemma." In actuality, the "bad guys" in these scenarios are the only actual moral actors; the actions of the victims are of little to no moral consequence whatsoever.
Rob
belle
Posts: 4,113
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12/31/2011 9:06:42 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/31/2011 8:05:40 PM, Lasagna wrote:
At 12/31/2011 4:30:36 PM, socialpinko wrote:
At 12/30/2011 1:34:39 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Catch-22s are not a good gauge of moral consequence. If some blood-thirsty murderor is giving you a choice to kill one person or another, then there isn't much opportunity for you to make any moral choices. There is morality in everything we do, yet much of the discussion lies solely in absurd examples.

The point is that an absurd example allows us to focus more on the principles involved than on the situation since there is no easy answer. Examples like this allow us to gauge the actual scope of the problem more easily.

Your confusing absurdity with magnitude. As Plato did in The Republic, he sought to construct a state to demonstrate justice in the individual, where justice is more subtle and not as easily discerned. I often use extremes to demonstrate my points for this very reason. But we are not increasing magnitude here, we are simply creating more confusion than we started with. Natural situations rarely exist where someone would have to, say, murder a baby to save x lives. When this does occur it is only because a human mind is artificially creating the situation, I.e, a murderor is creating a sick game or otherwise troublesome scenario just to create this moral "dilemma." In actuality, the "bad guys" in these scenarios are the only actual moral actors; the actions of the victims are of little to no moral consequence whatsoever.

i think you're missing the point of exercises like this one. it is an extremely contrived situation because it has to be to isolate the variable of interest- in this case action vs inaction. pretty much either way the child dies. the question is... can you take the *action* of killing it to save your own life, or is it superior to refrain from performing a "wrong" action even if it means being killed for it? such situations highlight important distinctions we make when contemplating moral dilemmas and give us a clearer understanding of what it is we think is important/relevant to consider. its an investigation of the nature of ethics rather than the attempt to apply ethics to everyday problems.
evidently i only come to ddo to avoid doing homework...
ConservativePolitico
Posts: 8,210
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12/31/2011 11:34:58 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/31/2011 9:06:42 PM, belle wrote:
At 12/31/2011 8:05:40 PM, Lasagna wrote:
At 12/31/2011 4:30:36 PM, socialpinko wrote:
At 12/30/2011 1:34:39 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Catch-22s are not a good gauge of moral consequence. If some blood-thirsty murderor is giving you a choice to kill one person or another, then there isn't much opportunity for you to make any moral choices. There is morality in everything we do, yet much of the discussion lies solely in absurd examples.

The point is that an absurd example allows us to focus more on the principles involved than on the situation since there is no easy answer. Examples like this allow us to gauge the actual scope of the problem more easily.

Your confusing absurdity with magnitude. As Plato did in The Republic, he sought to construct a state to demonstrate justice in the individual, where justice is more subtle and not as easily discerned. I often use extremes to demonstrate my points for this very reason. But we are not increasing magnitude here, we are simply creating more confusion than we started with. Natural situations rarely exist where someone would have to, say, murder a baby to save x lives. When this does occur it is only because a human mind is artificially creating the situation, I.e, a murderor is creating a sick game or otherwise troublesome scenario just to create this moral "dilemma." In actuality, the "bad guys" in these scenarios are the only actual moral actors; the actions of the victims are of little to no moral consequence whatsoever.

i think you're missing the point of exercises like this one. it is an extremely contrived situation because it has to be to isolate the variable of interest- in this case action vs inaction. pretty much either way the child dies. the question is... can you take the *action* of killing it to save your own life, or is it superior to refrain from performing a "wrong" action even if it means being killed for it? such situations highlight important distinctions we make when contemplating moral dilemmas and give us a clearer understanding of what it is we think is important/relevant to consider. its an investigation of the nature of ethics rather than the attempt to apply ethics to everyday problems.

Yes exactly. Personally I choose inaction because then the moral negative is preformed by another party and not yourself.
MarquisX
Posts: 925
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1/1/2012 12:44:41 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Leave my child with the others. Attack one of our hunters, that should get the other hunters attention, while i create a lot of noise the others slide out hopefully and escape.
Sophisticated ignorance, write my curses in cursive
Physik
Posts: 686
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1/1/2012 1:06:29 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
The philosophical question is asking whether it justified to kill an innocent to save a larger number of innocents.

I would say it is.
"Just don't let them dissuade you. Stick to your beliefs no matter what and you'll be fine." - ConservativePolitico, the guy that accused me of being close-minded.

"We didn't start slavery, they themselves started it. When the white man first got to Africa they had already enslaved themselves, they just capitalized on an opportunity." - ConservativePolitico

"The Bible to me is a history book and requires very little faith to believe in." - ConservativePolitico
MarquisX
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1/1/2012 2:11:47 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 1:06:29 AM, Physik wrote:
The philosophical question is asking whether it justified to kill an innocent to save a larger number of innocents.

I would say it is.

Really? What gives you the right to decide who lives our who dies? What if the others were rapist amd child molesters? You wouldnt know buyt you'd kill a child to save them?
Sophisticated ignorance, write my curses in cursive
Ren
Posts: 7,102
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1/1/2012 2:41:14 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/31/2011 7:25:52 AM, Jon1 wrote:
Indeed, that's the only option you have with the alive baby.

Unless you can evidence otherwise, I made it clear that there are several other options.

A man's limited intellectual capacity should not excuse the limitations it places on his moral fiber. Morals are, indeed, a product of higher thinking.
Physik
Posts: 686
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1/1/2012 2:46:05 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 2:11:47 AM, MarquisX wrote:
At 1/1/2012 1:06:29 AM, Physik wrote:
The philosophical question is asking whether it justified to kill an innocent to save a larger number of innocents.

I would say it is.

Really? What gives you the right to decide who lives our who dies? What if the others were rapist amd child molesters? You wouldnt know buyt you'd kill a child to save them?

I said 'innocents' in that they have done nothing to deserve the fate that will befall them, and I didn't say one was a child.

I asked the philosophical question because anything else will just be a false dichotomy.
"Just don't let them dissuade you. Stick to your beliefs no matter what and you'll be fine." - ConservativePolitico, the guy that accused me of being close-minded.

"We didn't start slavery, they themselves started it. When the white man first got to Africa they had already enslaved themselves, they just capitalized on an opportunity." - ConservativePolitico

"The Bible to me is a history book and requires very little faith to believe in." - ConservativePolitico
OberHerr
Posts: 13,062
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1/1/2012 3:10:09 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Do I get to be Chuck Norris?
-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-OBERHERR'S SIGNATURE-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-

Official Enforcer for the DDO Elite(if they existed).

"Cases are anti-town." - FourTrouble

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Physik
Posts: 686
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1/1/2012 3:53:45 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 3:10:09 AM, OberHerr wrote:
Do I get to be Chuck Norris?

Only if I'm Batman.
"Just don't let them dissuade you. Stick to your beliefs no matter what and you'll be fine." - ConservativePolitico, the guy that accused me of being close-minded.

"We didn't start slavery, they themselves started it. When the white man first got to Africa they had already enslaved themselves, they just capitalized on an opportunity." - ConservativePolitico

"The Bible to me is a history book and requires very little faith to believe in." - ConservativePolitico
Lasagna
Posts: 2,440
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1/1/2012 10:46:38 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
belle: I understand your aim is to isolate, but isolation implies simplification. Catch-22s are inherently complex, which is why they remain essentially unsolvable and and disagreed upon.

I could create a complete obstacle course of catch 22s and I'm not necessarily going to learn about morality. How far do you proceed through the course? In each step, you are obliged to conduct increasingly hanous acts while "saving" people who are being tortured or killed in another part of the course. This is not moral exercise, it is ridiculousness.

The creator of these games performs hideous moral acts to set them up, and from there the only moral value is basically to end the foolishness before it goes any farther.

There is a difference between science and morality that i've noticed. Science can be set up and isolated/controlled as you are trying to do here, while morality cannot. The reason is because morality involves the choices we make through the entire process, and can't be arbitrarily scissored before and after your experiment. Why you chose the experiment, what you did that morning before you showed up to conduct it, who you decided to torture/kill or not, and every other variable involved all come to bear on your results.

Let's take our catch-22 obstacle course again. Who decided to put these people's lives at risk? Why did you participate in the exercise? What were the events leading up to it? These are all relevant and you just can't assume that a hypothetical universe is created for ten minutes in a vacuum just for your purposes. I assure you that if a situation like that ever did crop up in the real world, that there would be plenty of morality to judge before it even started and none of it would hinge on the players' decisions.

What you are essentially doing with a catch-22 is hiding these moral factors. The exercise becomes simply a measure of the ineptitude of the example and has little moral consequence.

And look at the answers produced by it. Complete garbage. Does anyone have a satisfying solution? The last one was that "inaction" is preferable to action. Are you serious? I could produce limitless examples of immoral inaction. Not one answer produced has any merit because nobody has the most important information!
Rob
Ren
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1/1/2012 7:07:05 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
That was essentially the point of my post as well --

Catch-22 situations are presented in such a way that you are given two unrealistic options, with the presumption that there are no other options. In reality, there would be no such situations -- there are always several options, and it is this potential that makes it more likely that organisms that are more intelligent will adapt more effectively and outlive their opponents.

In reality, what you're really asking is whether you could bring yourself to sacrifice a child to make up for whatever mistake you and a group of other adults made to put yourselves and the child in that situation in the first place.

And, the answer is no, you should not sacrifice that child's life and cower and hide, you should figure a way out of that situation, if for the sole purpose of getting that child to safety.

Fkkin monsters.
OMGJustinBieber
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1/1/2012 7:14:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 7:07:05 PM, Ren wrote:
That was essentially the point of my post as well --

Catch-22 situations are presented in such a way that you are given two unrealistic options, with the presumption that there are no other options. In reality, there would be no such situations -- there are always several options, and it is this potential that makes it more likely that organisms that are more intelligent will adapt more effectively and outlive their opponents.

In reality, what you're really asking is whether you could bring yourself to sacrifice a child to make up for whatever mistake you and a group of other adults made to put yourselves and the child in that situation in the first place.

And, the answer is no, you should not sacrifice that child's life and cower and hide, you should figure a way out of that situation, if for the sole purpose of getting that child to safety.

Fkkin monsters.

What other options did the people have in this situation? This situation may have arisen during any number of ethnic cleansings/genocides over the course of human history. I would, at least in theory, sacrifice the child's life in the scenario described. Why is it necessarily a mistake that the group of adults ended up there? I'm thinking Anne Frank here - the family took extreme caution but was still caught. Regardless, past decisions can only be reflected on while immediate dangers demand fast actions.
PARADIGM_L0ST
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1/1/2012 7:24:21 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 7:07:05 PM, Ren wrote:
That was essentially the point of my post as well --

Catch-22 situations are presented in such a way that you are given two unrealistic options, with the presumption that there are no other options. In reality, there would be no such situations -- there are always several options, and it is this potential that makes it more likely that organisms that are more intelligent will adapt more effectively and outlive their opponents.:

It's kind of a useless exercise because no one can say for certain how they'd actually react until your back is actually up against the wall.

In reality, what you're really asking is whether you could bring yourself to sacrifice a child to make up for whatever mistake you and a group of other adults made to put yourselves and the child in that situation in the first place.:

I have a book on Operation Redwing, a Navy Seal operation in Afghanistan that left 22 SEALs dead, with a sole survivor to tell the tragic tale. A 4-man SEAL element was on patrol when two goatherders stumbled upon their position. They were faced with a moral dilemma. 1 of the goatherds was a young boy, approximately 13 years old. Fearing they would run off and compromise their position to the Taliban, 1 of the SEALs opted to quietly execute them. Another one was indifferent and stated he could go either way.

The SEAL officer was opposed to it and viewed it as flatout murder. It came down to the author of the book, who was the sole survivor (though he obviously did not know that in advance). He stated that every tactical bone in his body told him to execute the goatherds, but ultimately his sense of morality couldn't allow it.

They let them go.

Not even 30 minutes later a Taliban regiment of 150 warriors ambled onto their position, no doubt because of the goatherders. A vicious firefight ensued. The team managed to hold off the attack, killing upwards of 50 men... Just the 4 of them. The overwhelming force was ultimately too much, and they all died in horrific ways. They managed to call for help, and a reaction force was enroute to their position. But their helicopter was shot down by an RPG. I even personally knew one the deceased.

In the survivors mind, 11 of his closest compatriots, as well as 8 others sent to rescue him, died as a direct result of his choice. Suffice it to say that not only does he have survivors guilt, but he feels that his best friends are now dead because of a choice he made. Whether he was right or wrong can never be objectively known, but the point is that there is no right answer. It's just life or death.

http://en.wikipedia.org...
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Illegalcombatant
Posts: 4,008
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1/1/2012 10:42:39 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 12/28/2011 11:48:10 PM, ConservativePolitico wrote:
You are trapped in a shack with five other people, you are hiding from a roving band of cutthroats who are seeking to kill you. You have your infant child with you. The men are currently looking close by and your child begins to squirm, soon he will cry. If your baby cries it will alert the men to your position and therefore all seven of you (you + your baby + the five others) will surely be killed. Do you kill your own child to save six lives including your own? Why or why not?

I would pray to God. After no divine intervention, I would make a series of excuses to reconcile my belief in God and the events that unfold including but not limited too.....

1) God has to allow free will of the soldiers to kill us
2) It will result in a greater good
3) This will bring us closer to God
4) We are all sinnners anyway, who deserve eternal hell

Sure some people might point out this is just a bunch of excuses, but I have faith, unshakable, evidence and reason be dammed faith.
"Seems like another attempt to insert God into areas our knowledge has yet to penetrate. You figure God would be bigger than the gaps of our ignorance." Drafterman 19/5/12
Lasagna
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1/1/2012 10:49:26 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 1/1/2012 7:24:21 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
At 1/1/2012 7:07:05 PM, Ren wrote:
That was essentially the point of my post as well --

Catch-22 situations are presented in such a way that you are given two unrealistic options, with the presumption that there are no other options. In reality, there would be no such situations -- there are always several options, and it is this potential that makes it more likely that organisms that are more intelligent will adapt more effectively and outlive their opponents.:

It's kind of a useless exercise because no one can say for certain how they'd actually react until your back is actually up against the wall.

That's not the main reason I would argue but yeah, that's one good reason amongst many that it is useless. Belle says she'd kill the child for the good of the many. I personally think she's fooling herself.

In reality, what you're really asking is whether you could bring yourself to sacrifice a child to make up for whatever mistake you and a group of other adults made to put yourselves and the child in that situation in the first place.:

I have a book on Operation Redwing, a Navy Seal operation in Afghanistan that left 22 SEALs dead, with a sole survivor to tell the tragic tale. A 4-man SEAL element was on patrol when two goatherders stumbled upon their position. They were faced with a moral dilemma. 1 of the goatherds was a young boy, approximately 13 years old. Fearing they would run off and compromise their position to the Taliban, 1 of the SEALs opted to quietly execute them. Another one was indifferent and stated he could go either way.

The SEAL officer was opposed to it and viewed it as flatout murder. It came down to the author of the book, who was the sole survivor (though he obviously did not know that in advance). He stated that every tactical bone in his body told him to execute the goatherds, but ultimately his sense of morality couldn't allow it.

They let them go.

Not even 30 minutes later a Taliban regiment of 150 warriors ambled onto their position, no doubt because of the goatherders. A vicious firefight ensued. The team managed to hold off the attack, killing upwards of 50 men... Just the 4 of them. The overwhelming force was ultimately too much, and they all died in horrific ways. They managed to call for help, and a reaction force was enroute to their position. But their helicopter was shot down by an RPG. I even personally knew one the deceased.

In the survivors mind, 11 of his closest compatriots, as well as 8 others sent to rescue him, died as a direct result of his choice. Suffice it to say that not only does he have survivors guilt, but he feels that his best friends are now dead because of a choice he made. Whether he was right or wrong can never be objectively known, but the point is that there is no right answer. It's just life or death.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

Exactly, exactly, exactly. They had moral problems with killing the goat-herders for good reason. What happened next was 150 warriors attacking 4 warriors. No innocents, just people who made the sacrifice to kill or be killed going at each other for the sake of whatever "mission" they chose to be on.

Those Seals did the right and honorable thing, and just because the mission was compromised and they were failures in their careers doesn't change a moral thing. Only a conditioned person, something military men typically go through which is why the story surprises me, would use that artifice to justify murder. I would not hesitate to commend them for their actions (after landing in the country on a secret mission) and I can safely say that had I been in that group I would have failed to shoot the goat-herders as well and not regretted it. The regret of causing your comrades deaths is not as strong as the regret of cold-blooded murder.
Rob