I believe that this moral philosophy is the means by which we live. In general, any action done by a person is to produce some sort of pleasure. However, the fact that we cannot equate happiness and goodness means that we cannot use it as a means of judging pro...
Over the years, human beings have not made the right conclusions when it comes to benevolence. In considering when a decision should be made regarding a fellow human being in need, trivial conditions are used as excuses such as distance, magnitude, and how well you know someone. Considerably wealthy countries have given money but it amounts to a fraction of the costs of their own development of transportation and entertainment. The morality of the situation is skewed in order to coddle the conscience of the inactive. As much as people and governments would like to, they cannot deny what is happening in the world around them. The position taken by Singer is that the way people in wealthier countries respond to situations in which others around them need help due to some man made or natural disaster is unjustifiable. Singer argues that many thinks need to be redesigned—namely, what shapes and affects our definition of morality and our way of life that we tend to take for granted.
In the excerpt “Rich and Poor” from Peter Singer’s book “Practical Ethics,” Singer critiques how he portrays the way we respond to both absolute poverty and absolute affluence. Before coming to this class, I have always believed that donating or giving something of your own to help someone else is a moral decision. After reading Peter Singer’s argument that we are obligated to assist extreme poverty, I remain with the same beliefs I previously had. I will argue that Singer’s argument is not convincing. I will demonstrate that there are important differences between being obligated to save a small child from drowning (in his Shallow Pond Example) and being obligated to assist absolute poverty. These differences restrict his argument by analogy for the obligation to assist in the case of absolute poverty.
In order to reach a better theory to address what makes a life go best we must admit that there are things which are worthy of being desired due to some intrinsic properties they have, as opposed to assuming all things which are good for an agent are good only because they are desired by the agent; this notion however, is too far a departure from the idea of Desire Satisfaction Theory, and requires an alternative ethical theory to account for it.
society poverty has various definitions that lack the true picture that poverty depicts. Dictionary defines poverty as “the state of one who lacks a usual or socially acceptable amount of money on material possessions.” In other words poverty is a situation where a person fail to earn a sufficient amount of income to purchase basic necessities such as food, shelter, clothes etc. In reality, poverty is much more than the capital resources. According to Laster Brown explained poverty as “the world without orders’ and further emphasized that “unfortunately it is a human condition. It is despair, grief and pain.” However, the issue of poverty and how we deal with it could differ among people. This idea is reflected in Peter Singer’s “Famine, Affluence and Morality” essay and the opposing essay written by John Arthur in “World hunger and moral obligation: the case against Singer.” Peter Singer raises the question of poverty and our obligations toward it in his essay “Famine, Affluence, and Morality”. In the essay, Singer addresses the question of what obligations we have toward those ar...
Singer, Peter. 1986. Famine, Affluence, and Morality. In Introduction to Philosophy: Classical and Contemporary Readings, ed. John Perry and Michael Bratman: 573-580. New York: Oxford University Press. Originally published 1972.
“Famine, Affluence, and Morality” is a piece written by a moral philosopher, Peter Singer, who places a challenge to our traditional notions of charitable giving. The essay argues in favour of donating, and of the moral obligation imposed upon us to contribute and help the global poor with humanitarian purposes. By critically assessing Singer’s writing, this reflection paper will study the main arguments advocated for from his work, as well as possible objections.
How much money is one morally obligated to give to relief overseas? Many In people would say that although it is a good thing to do, one is not obligated to give anything. Other people would say that if a person has more than he needs, then he should donate a portion of what he has. Peter Singer, however, proposes a radically different view. His essay, “Famine, Affluence, and Morality,” focuses on the Bengal crisis in 1971 and claims that one is morally obligated to give as much as possible. His thesis supports the idea that “We ought to give until we reach the level of marginal utility – that is, the level at which, by giving more, I would cause as much suffering to myself or my dependents as I would relieve by my gift” (399). He says that one's obligation to give to people in need half-way around the world is just as strong as the obligation to give to one's neighbor in need. Even more than that, he says that one should keep giving until, by giving more, you would be in a worse position than the people one means to help. Singer's claim is so different than people's typical idea of morality that is it is easy to quickly dismiss it as being absurd. Saying that one should provide monetary relief to the point that you are in as bad a position as those receiving your aid seems to go against common sense. However, when the evidence he presents is considered, it is impossible not to wonder if he might be right.
In order to understand why O’Neill’s position is superior to Singer’s position on famine relief, I will present information on both sides. O’Neill gives a Kantian, duty-based explanation, that focuses on people 's intentions. One of the central claims of Kantian ethics is that one must never treat a person, either oneself or another, as mere
In Peter Singer’s “Famine, Affluence and Morality,” Singer makes three claims about moral duty; that avoidable suffering is bad, that it is our moral obligation to help others in need, and that we should help those in suffering regardless of their distance to us or if others are in the same position as we are to help. First, I will elaborate on Singer’s arguments for each of these positions. Next, I will discuss two objections to Singer’s position, one that he debates in his writings and another that I examine on my own, and Singer’s responses to those objections. Then I will examine why Singer’s rebuttals to the objections were successful.
Peter Singer a philosopher and professor at Princeton University who wrote the essay titled “Famine, Affluence, and Morality”, where he argues that wealthy people have a moral obligation to help provide to developing nation’s resources that would increase their standard of living and decrease death due to starvation, exposure, and preventable sicknesses. John Arthur’s essay argues that Singer says that all affluent people have a moral obligation to give their money to poor people to the extent that the wealthy person would be on the same level as the poor person, poor people have no positive right to our assistance, and wealthy people have a negative right to their property, which weighs against their obligation.
In this paper, I will argue against two articles which were written against Singer’s view, and against helping the poor countries in general. I will argue against John Arthur’s article Famine Relief and the Ideal Moral Code (1974 ) ,and Garrett Hardin’s article Lifeboat Ethics: the Case Against Helping the Poor ( 1976); I will show that both articles are exaggerating the negative consequences of aiding the poor, as well as building them on false assumptions. Both Arthur and Hardin are promoting the self-interest without considering the rights of others, and without considering that giving for famine relief means giving life to many children.
In the article “Famine, Affluence, and Morality,” Peter Singer argues that our conceptions on moral belief need to change. Specifically, He argues that giving to famine relief is not optional but a moral duty and failing to contribute money is immoral. As Singer puts it, “The way people in affluent countries react ... cannot be justified; indeed the whole way we look at moral issues-our moral conceptual scheme-needs to be altered and with it, the way of life that has come to be taken for granted in our society”(135). In other words Singer believes that unless you can find something wrong with the following argument you will have to drastically change your lifestyle and how you spend your money. Although some people might believe that his conclusion is too radical, Singer insists that it is the logical result of his argument. In sum, his view is that all affluent people should give much more to famine relief.
This paper explores Peter Singer’s argument, in Famine, Affluence, and Morality, that we have morally required obligations to those in need. The explanation of his argument and conclusion, if accepted, would dictate changes to our lifestyle as well as our conceptions of duty and charity, and would be particularly demanding of the affluent. In response to the central case presented by Singer, John Kekes offers his version, which he labels the and points out some objections. Revisions of the principle provide some response to the objections, but raise additional problems. Yet, in the end, the revisions provide support for Singer’s basic argument that, in some way, we ought to help those in need.
Peter Singer, in his influential essay “Famine, Affluence and Poverty”, argues that affluent people have the moral obligation to contribute to charity in order to save the poor from suffering; any spending on luxuries would be unjustified as long as it can be used to improve other’s lives. In developing his argument, Singer involves one crucial premise known as the Principle of Sacrifice—“If it is in our power to prevent something bad from happening, without thereby sacrificing anything of comparable moral importance, we ought, morally, to do it” . To show that such principle has the property to be held universal, Singer refers to a scenario in which a person witnesses a drowning child. Most people, by common sense, hold that the witness has the moral duty to rescue the child despite some potential costs. Since letting people die in poverty is no different from watching a child drowning without offering any help, Singer goes on and concludes that affluent people have the moral duty to keep donating to the poor until an increment of money makes no further contribution.