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PHILOS 1B03 (370)


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Stefan Rodde

Kant  Consequences don’t matter for ethics o An action is right if it is sanctioned by a genuine moral rule  Categorical imperative o Moral rules are supposed to be universal o If a “rule” cannot be universal it is not a genuine rule and so should not be followed o Certain actions can never be sanctioned by genuine moral rules o They can only exist as violations of general genuine rules  Perfect duties: that can be completely fulfilled at any moment of our lives o Typically negative o Adultery; lies  Imperfect duties: that cannot be complete fulfilled at any moment o Typical positive o Attitude in how they are fulfilled o Help others  Categorical Imperative: Humanity as an end formulation o Act so that you treat humanity, whether in your own person of the person of another, always as an end and never as a means only  Just because we cannot treat people as a mere means doesn’t entail that we can treat a person as a means at all  Its possible to treat a person as a means at all mere means  Duty not to commit suicide Duty Perfect Imperfect Ourselves Duty not to commit suicide Duty to develop our abilities Others Duty to not break Duty to help those in promises needs o Conflict in duties, possible  May be problematic We are only required to treat persons (rational agents) as ends in themselves Kantian Environmentalism-problems  Only rational beings (persons) possess intrinsic worth  Consequences are morally irrational o Nature has no intrinsic worth  Critiques Kant’s views on our duties to non-rational nature  Develop a logocentiric environmental ethics terms  logocentrism o only rational nature has absolute unconditional value  personification principle o only persons have rational natures
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