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PHL lecture, feb. 14.doc

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Peter King

Kant: Autonomy and the Kingdom of Ends • Kant argues that moral agents have intrinsic worth as the sorts of beings capable of acting rightly; hence they have to be treated with dignity, and they cannot be used instrumentally o (C3) Ends in Themselves: act in such a way that you always treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never simply as a means but always at the same time as an end [in itself]  Kant wants to prohibit us from merely using one another • Kant holds that (C3) is equivalent to (C1) and (C2) o Suicide: the prospective suicide is treating himself (his life) merely as a means to avoiding future pain o Lying Promise: someone who makes a lying promise is using the person to whom he lies as a mere means to acquire the money he needs o Uncultivated Talents: letting talents go to waste is an instance of failing ‘to promote humanity in our person’ o Unhelpfulness: not helping others clearly fails to promo
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