Ethical Ethics Of Torture

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The use of torture has always been a hot topic of moral and ethical discussion. Typically, the discussion is not about whether or not torture is good, but rather if there is ever a morally acceptable situation in which torture should be allowed to occur. Does a criminal’s deeds strip him of basic human rights and make it morally okay for him to be physically and mentally abused? Do certain situations such as war make torture acceptable? It is generally agreed upon that torture is a terrible violation of a person and their rights; the common thread among moral questions such as these is if there are any times when torture could be considered morally acceptable. In order to analyze this moral dilemma, an ethical system is commonly used as a…show more content…
As Shunzo Majima describes it: “According to Kantian deontology, torture cannot be morally justified if an individual’s humanity and dignity are denied through torture and the torture victim is used merely as a means for achieving the purpose of torture” (Majima, 2012, p. 138). Because of the way torture gravely violates a person’s autonomy and treats them only as a means of getting information or for some other end, it is considered inherently wrong in the eyes of deontology. People who are tortured are no longer seen as human or respected as one; instead, they are seen only as tools that can be manipulated and used in order to achieve a certain result. This, to deontology, is morally…show more content…
People may try to justify its use by claiming it can be used to gain critical information or in similar situations; this is a feeble attempt to use possible results in order to justify the terrible use of torture as a means of getting there. To deontology, torture is morally wrong, and more than that, it is always morally wrong. There is no situation in which torture should be used, period. The way torture grossly outstrips people’s human autonomy and right to be treated as ends in themselves makes it a moral evil in the eyes of deontology. In addition, torture’s maxim of allowing for one person to harm another for gain is also not universalizable, making it an even more morally corrupt action. Deontology examines the critical question of whether or not there are times humanity should allow atrocities of torture in order to achieve an end. Deontology answers with a stern and resounding disapproval of torture. This ethical system sees every person as valuable, equal, and autonomous, who should never be abused or manipulated for any reason. With this virtuous sensibility in mind, it is easy to see why deontology so firmly rejects torture as ever being
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