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A different moral thought experiment

kp98
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7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?
Chaosism
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7/30/2015 8:50:42 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hmmm. Depends. People do not generally have rational thoughts (as far as I believe) in times of such time-constrained crisis like that. If he does not display terrible remorse (even if all of the saved were helpless children) or attempts to justify his action, then pariah, as he is unjustifiably placing his own desires before another's. If he does show significant remorse, then neither praise nor shun or warranted. I think...
kp98
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7/30/2015 9:10:49 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Thx for response... I don't suggest there is a right answer! But suppose it wasn't 12 people it was only 6 - then suppose it was only Abel and Baker in the cell....

I think that Abel did the right thing from any 'logical' point of view. None the less there is something about what he did that jars against most people's 'sense of morality'. I think that is because our sense of morality is a hard-wired circuit in our brains that operates independently of our conscious reasoning.

Does Abel deserve a medal or locking up and throwing away the key? To be honest, I'm not sure if I would support Abel being punished, but neither would I be too sure about wanting him as a friend....
Dragonfang
Posts: 1,122
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7/30/2015 10:01:27 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Abel being a pariah depends on how well Baker liked, and if Abel reacted instinctively by throwing Baker (or it looked like he did) before mourning him and affirming that Baker's life had real value. If he looked like someone who will willingly sacrifice others when convenient he will never be seen as an ally, and will get called at being a psychopath/sociopath.

Either way, I'd predict most people will see the event as a necessary evil after any initial emotional reaction, and try to make the best of it. For one dying would be a better outcome than 12 people dying (unless Baker is an ultra-important person, which is doubtful).

Unless the prisoners stayed in the cell for a long time and they are mentally taxed, most of the anger and resentment, after people got over the shock and comprehended the event, should be directed at the psycho who stuck them into a small cell and dropped a grenade.
dylancatlow
Posts: 13,129
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7/31/2015 3:47:08 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

I'd say he was a hero if he threw himself on the grenade. Nevertheless, I feel that his action is justified.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 9,180
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7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.
"See now Oblivion shimmering all around us, its very tranquility deadlier than tempest. How little all our keels have troubled it."
- Lord Dunsany -

"Over her head the stars, the thoughts of God in the heavens,
Shone on the eyes of man, who had ceased to marvel and worship"
- Henry Longfellow -

"We enjoy, we see nothing by direct vision; but only by reflection, and in anatomical dismemberment."
- Thomas Carlyle -
bsh1
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7/31/2015 5:46:08 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Heroism requires a degree of self-sacrifice. Abel is not a hero. His actions may be justified as self-defense or defense of others, but he acted more out of self-interest than anything else it seems.
Live Long and Prosper

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xXCryptoXx
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7/31/2015 5:00:55 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

What he did was evil, insofar as he murdered someone without consent. In this case, the ends do not justify the means because the means was inherently evil.
Nolite Timere
xXCryptoXx
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7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.
Nolite Timere
Kozu
Posts: 381
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7/31/2015 5:04:04 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/31/2015 5:00:55 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

What he did was evil, insofar as he murdered someone without consent. In this case, the ends do not justify the means because the means was inherently evil.

So if you were Abel. You'd let the 11 die? Including yourself.
xXCryptoXx
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7/31/2015 5:06:52 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/31/2015 5:04:04 PM, Kozu wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:00:55 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

What he did was evil, insofar as he murdered someone without consent. In this case, the ends do not justify the means because the means was inherently evil.

So if you were Abel. You'd let the 11 die? Including yourself.

No, I would kill myself to save the others (I hope I would at least). However, it would be better that the grenade kill all of us than I murder someone to save the rest, insofar as it is immoral that I kill someone but it is amoral that a grenade kills us. Although, all of this makes much more sense within a Christian context of morality, which rejects utilitarianism and does not see death as the most terrible thing that can happen to someone.
Nolite Timere
Kozu
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7/31/2015 5:10:21 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/31/2015 5:06:52 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:04:04 PM, Kozu wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:00:55 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

What he did was evil, insofar as he murdered someone without consent. In this case, the ends do not justify the means because the means was inherently evil.

So if you were Abel. You'd let the 11 die? Including yourself.

No, I would kill myself to save the others (I hope I would at least). However, it would be better that the grenade kill all of us than I murder someone to save the rest, insofar as it is immoral that I kill someone but it is amoral that a grenade kills us. Although, all of this makes much more sense within a Christian context of morality, which rejects utilitarianism and does not see death as the most terrible thing that can happen to someone.

Its funny, I didn't even think of that as an option lol
Otokage
Posts: 2,460
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7/31/2015 5:47:31 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

He is a very pragmatic evil person.
Geogeer
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7/31/2015 6:16:13 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Murderer.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 9,180
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8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.

No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything. The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.
"See now Oblivion shimmering all around us, its very tranquility deadlier than tempest. How little all our keels have troubled it."
- Lord Dunsany -

"Over her head the stars, the thoughts of God in the heavens,
Shone on the eyes of man, who had ceased to marvel and worship"
- Henry Longfellow -

"We enjoy, we see nothing by direct vision; but only by reflection, and in anatomical dismemberment."
- Thomas Carlyle -
ShabShoral
Posts: 4,014
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8/1/2015 1:55:34 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

He's morally neutral. He was put in the situation against his own will, and, as such, any actions he took were forced by the person who imprisoned him - any blood spilled is on their hands. Killing himself would have been equally neutral.
At 7/22/2013 7:50:22 PM, 000ike wrote:
How does he have the time and energy to write all that? geez. Never get in an argument with YYW, he'll lecture you to death. I think that's quite a talent

I would prefer not to.
Vox_Veritas
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8/1/2015 2:04:04 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

No. He simply had knowledge of the logical course of action and he had somebody else in the room do the right thing. The baker is the hero.
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xXCryptoXx
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8/1/2015 3:14:14 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.

No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything.

His logic was that ultimately one person dies and the rest live, so the means doesn't matter. I simply applied this reasoning to a smaller group of people.

The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.

All people are equally valuable by nature of being human. I would refuse to live in a society where the value of your life is based on how much you contribute to society.
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Skepsikyma
Posts: 9,180
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8/1/2015 3:20:04 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 8/1/2015 3:14:14 AM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.


No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything.

His logic was that ultimately one person dies and the rest live, so the means doesn't matter. I simply applied this reasoning to a smaller group of people.

There's another factor in there: the risk of doing nothing increases as you add more people to the room. The sacrifice of one life buys more lives, the more people that are in the room. So the sacrifice becomes more beneficial. The result to be avoided is that the bomb goes off with no body smothering it; if no one offers to sacrifice themselves, then it becomes a moral imperative to kill someone in that room, and that imperative becomes more overpowering proportionate to the amount of life at risk.

The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.

All people are equally valuable by nature of being human. I would refuse to live in a society where the value of your life is based on how much you contribute to society.

Well, that's pretty much every society which has ever existed, so good luck with that.
"See now Oblivion shimmering all around us, its very tranquility deadlier than tempest. How little all our keels have troubled it."
- Lord Dunsany -

"Over her head the stars, the thoughts of God in the heavens,
Shone on the eyes of man, who had ceased to marvel and worship"
- Henry Longfellow -

"We enjoy, we see nothing by direct vision; but only by reflection, and in anatomical dismemberment."
- Thomas Carlyle -
dylancatlow
Posts: 13,129
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8/1/2015 4:25:18 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 8/1/2015 3:14:14 AM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.


No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything.

His logic was that ultimately one person dies and the rest live, so the means doesn't matter. I simply applied this reasoning to a smaller group of people.

In your scenario, Abel is only saving his own life. In order to be a hero, you need to help someone else. No one would consider someone a hero if they fell into the ocean and managed to rescue themselves. The term simply doesn't apply.


The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.

All people are equally valuable by nature of being human. I would refuse to live in a society where the value of your life is based on how much you contribute to society.

By choosing to save, say, a talented surgeon over a homeless person, you're not implying that one is inherently more "worthy" of living than the other. You're thinking of the people the surgeon can help. There's nothing immoral about this.
Mhykiel
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8/1/2015 4:36:31 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 7/30/2015 9:10:49 PM, kp98 wrote:
Thx for response... I don't suggest there is a right answer! But suppose it wasn't 12 people it was only 6 - then suppose it was only Abel and Baker in the cell....

I think that Abel did the right thing from any 'logical' point of view. None the less there is something about what he did that jars against most people's 'sense of morality'. I think that is because our sense of morality is a hard-wired circuit in our brains that operates independently of our conscious reasoning.

Does Abel deserve a medal or locking up and throwing away the key? To be honest, I'm not sure if I would support Abel being punished, but neither would I be too sure about wanting him as a friend....

It's jaring because Abel killed Baker.

Because the scenario is killing for Abel's own gain, it is considered murder.
Mhykiel
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8/1/2015 5:02:20 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.

No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything. The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.

Baker morally obligated to sacrifice his own life?

Abel morally justified in pushing Baker to make that sacrifice happen?

That kind of thinking is devoid of ethical treatment and consideration. It is morally bankrupt.

Baker is a con artist and drunk and Abel a monarch. You think who lives and dies should be based on classes distinguished by wealth. While I may concede Abel is more beneficial to society than Baker, I would not infer Baker has an obligation to kill himself.

Now while that first set up I could almost agree with, the second. That Abel is morally justified in forcefully making Baker die is out of the ball park. Abel despite what ever prestige he has is not justified in forcefully taking a persons life without due process.

I can't blame you too much tho. The logical conclusion for an Atheist moral compass is how does it benefit them. And I'm sure if you were one of the 10 saved, you would call Abel a hero and justify it any way you could.

But what if you were Baker? Different story then isn't it.
Skepsikyma
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8/1/2015 5:55:49 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 8/1/2015 5:02:20 AM, Mhykiel wrote:
At 8/1/2015 1:45:35 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/31/2015 5:03:33 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
At 7/31/2015 4:10:40 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 7/30/2015 8:24:14 PM, kp98 wrote:
A number of people are locked in a cell. A hand-grenade is thrown in so the only way for anyone to survive is to smother the grenade. Abel throws Baker onto it, thus saving everyone's life - except of course Baker's.

Say there were a dozen people in the cell. Able saved 11 of them. Is he a hero or a pariah?

Hero. There are two outcomes: everyone dies, or one person dies. Abel's quick thinking guaranteed that ten people lived instead of dying. His dying instead of Baker's wouldn't have any impact on the morality of the action, because in both cases the sacrificed party would have died anyway. If the people had, say, an 80% chance of survival, then things get a bit more interesting. In this case, Abel saves one life for two, but deprives the sacrificed party of a significant chance to live. I guess the morality depends on your perspective, in that situation.

If it were just Abel and Baker in the sell, and Abel threw baker onto the grenade to save himself, would Abel still be a hero? The principle seems to be the same. No matter what, one person was going to die and one was going to be saved.

No, it's not the same situation, because there aren't 10 other lives hanging in the balance if nobody does anything. The question is then 'how valuable are these people?' If Abel is a monarch, a symbol to thousands of people and the glue which holds a nation together, and Baker is a drunk and a con artist, then Baker would be morally obligated to throw himself, and Abel would be morally justified in pushing him on to it. If they were on equal footing, then I'd expect there to be a power struggle and no guilty party in the end.

Baker morally obligated to sacrifice his own life?

Abel morally justified in pushing Baker to make that sacrifice happen?

That kind of thinking is devoid of ethical treatment and consideration. It is morally bankrupt.

Well that's a convincing argument.

Baker is a con artist and drunk and Abel a monarch. You think who lives and dies should be based on classes distinguished by wealth. While I may concede Abel is more beneficial to society than Baker, I would not infer Baker has an obligation to kill himself.

Classes distinguished by influence and ability.

Now while that first set up I could almost agree with, the second. That Abel is morally justified in forcefully making Baker die is out of the ball park. Abel despite what ever prestige he has is not justified in forcefully taking a persons life without due process.

Due process sort of goes out the window when you're in a room with a live hand grenade. Do you expect them to set up a makeshift court?

I can't blame you too much tho. The logical conclusion for an Atheist moral compass is how does it benefit them. And I'm sure if you were one of the 10 saved, you would call Abel a hero and justify it any way you could.

But what if you were Baker? Different story then isn't it.

Luck of the draw, oh well, ta ta world. But I think that, choosing between a situation in which I have a less than 10% chance of dying, and a situation in which I have a 100% chance of dying, the former is the obvious choice.
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Shone on the eyes of man, who had ceased to marvel and worship"
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FaustianJustice
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8/1/2015 3:05:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
"Yeah. I killed him so you could live, and I could live and they could live, and I couldn't help but notice, no one else was throwing themselves on the grenade either..."

Actions were taken to save the group. Some one made the (Not so) tough call of answering the "Its him or me" equation. Ultimately all were going to die, and from the information present, nothing was being done to change that, so some one making the choice to sacrifice one for the group, even if not themselves, should be seen as a hero. And, so should the dude that got blowed up, too.
Here we have an advocate for Islamic arranged marriages demonstrating that children can consent to sex.
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