Ethics: Approaching moral decisions

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Ethics: Approaching moral decisions

When addressing questions on whether torture applied in areas pertaining to area of security including interrogation, one needs to be extra prudent in tackling the situation. However, before beginning, it would be important to first categorize the terrorist in custody as a prisoner of war. There are many different approaches to tackle the situation.

Considering the first view which is for Utilitarianism, it is mostly concerned with the maximization of the benefits that maximum number of people would get (Holmes, 2007). It argues that since the terrorist has the required information to help rescuing many lives, then applying torture in such a case is ethically most appropriate. The rationale would therefore focus on finding how the whole country would actually gain through the torture.

Again when basing on Kantian duty, it reasons that people must act in regard to their duty and respect for the moral law. And the current moral law commands that any form of human torture is literally wrong. Therefore, if someone recognizes the argument, then he or she must be able to factor it in such a decision. However, the decision must be reached without any biasness. Thus, in regard to Kant’s view, the application of torture would definitely not be justified since he reasons that we must always treat other as ends but not as means. In fact, if the prisoner is to be tortured, he would be used as a means or method in obtaining the information making the prisoner to solely become a means which is contrary to Kant’s law.

Virtue ethics on the other hand also have apparently similar approach, although focuses mostly on the feelings and emotions that the person torturing might have rather than his or her motives. The individual carrying out torturing out of duty is undoubtedly fulfilling his duty; however he might enjoy torturing the prisoner for his own selfish benefits. Now, according to Gardiner (2003), as much as the person torturing is fulfilling his duty, the virtue ethics considers him or her as wrong by doing that, not through fulfilling the duty, but by having others selfish or personal motives. However, if the person was doing it out of his sincere love to his country so as to save the lives of many citizens, though was in any way fulfilling the duty demand, the he is justified out of good virtue.

In considering Christian-principle based ethics, it is argued that in regard to the nature of God and human, “What he created is good, and the ends for which he created are also good-good ends that we as God’s servants should pursue.” Therefore, whether conquering to this argument does not tolerate the act of torture in this given scenario is only dependent on personal level. One may reason that the interpretation of scripture best highlights what ought to be done in the scenario. Generally, the view of Christianity in such a scenario is more of a gain situational and therefore applying torture on someone is necessarily depending on how an individual would explain loving which is exactly how the Bible requires the Christians to be like.

Therefore according to me, I would prefer the theory virtue ethics simply because its critical on both sides such that it only justifies torture of the prisoner if the person doing the torture is doing so for the love of his country and not for his own personal or selfish gain.

I am disagreeing with statement in Christian view which claims that, “Christian perception on the issue is again situational” and also that torturing of a person is basically how someone would explain loving which is also in line with our the bible or the scripture calls on Christians to be like. Personally, I do not believe that the perception of Christians is situational since as Holmes states that when it comes to moral rules in Christianity, there is no single situation that is so far different from one another (Holmes, 2007). In addition, I also do not have a belief that a person torturing another person shows any love, not even any single way. Generally, torture is not as containing only malice and pain and can only come from sadistic and evil people placed with only one intention of coercion. One may also argue that God only torture His children only to demonstrate His mighty power but not with any particular reason, though I would also stand to disagree with the statement. God only administers out His punishments specifically to the individuals who deserve the punishments which are the exact repercussions of people own misconducts. The punishments of God are ever perfectly fair and just.


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