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Lecture 66

PHIL 1200 Lecture 66: Lecture 66

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University of Manitoba
PHIL 1200
David R.Hampton

lD82R Peter Singer had approached the problem of famine from a Utilitarian perspective His conclusion was that we have a moral obligation to do everything (for as long as the sacrifice has no greater morally relevant worth than the gain) to prevent pain and suffering in others Singer’s conclusion seemed to be in contrast with the view that helping others, especially those far away, is a supererogatory act of charity and not a moral obligation O’Neil adopts a Kantian argument In particular, she is going to use the categorical imperative Act so that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in that of another, never simply as a means, but always at the same time as an end And see how obeying this maxim should affect our actions and attitudes towards famine First question What does it mean to treat someone simply as a means? To treat someone as a mere means is to involve them in a scheme of action to which they could not in principle consent An
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