How about YOU?
Wandering the information superhighway, he came upon the last refuge of civilization, PoFo, the only forum on the internet ...
Beren wrote:On what principle? Kill the stupid? It would be hard at first I guess, but I could get used to it perhaps.
Potemkin wrote:I would be totally okay with the principle of only killing people who would be totally okay with the idea of killing people on a principle.
Oh wait.... Never mind.
Igor Antunov wrote:Just a little hypothetical. I think I would kill on the basis of an abstract idea, and I'd enjoy it. Fulfillment would be mine.
How about YOU?
Godstud wrote:Killing only to protect yourself
late wrote:There is an ethical conundrum to goes like this:
You are standing on a railroad bridge. There is a train full of people headed for a washed out bridge, they will all die if the train is not stopped.
In front of you is a man, if you push him, he will fall on the tracks and die, but the train will see him and stop.
You have no other means of stopping the train.
Do you kill him, saving hundreds, or accept the consequences of murder and shove him? You have 5 seconds to decide.
Interesting thing about this dilemma is that it doesn't give you the option of killing yourself. Of course, the guy might try and stop you.
Our morality is rooted in our biology. Which makes complex moral decisions tricky. Killing someone on principle doesn't justify much. Not without an explanation that renders the principle moot.
Local Localist wrote:The first time, it would presumably be extremely difficult to kill another member of the same species, especially without the aid of gunpowder. I imagine, like anything, it would get easier the more I did it. I was going to say that I wouldn't even kill other animals, but the 'even' may well be superfluous in that individual people can be far more unambiguously dangerous than individuals of other species ever could, so one might have a cleaner conscience ending said people's lives than ending those of other species. On principle, under normal circumstances, I would not kill another person, or indeed another animal. I'm not opposed to euthanasia, or any level of self-defence, however, and I'm also not inherently against capital punishment (which, at least in certain circumstances, could easily be justified as a societal application of 'self-defence'). On the topic of killing oneself, however, of course I would find it quite hard to do so, but I am very much a supporter of the right to do that.
Potemkin wrote:If you eat meat or indeed use any animal products, then you kill animals all the time. You may not do it yourself, but every time you buy a packet of smoked bacon from your local supermarket you are paying somebody else to kill them on your behalf. The vegans, crazy as they are, are right about that.
And even if you're a vegan, you kill insects on a daily basis; hell, even scratching your brow as you ponder your next words of wisdom on PoFo probably kills thousands of innocent bacteria..... Lol.
Local Localist wrote:Well, I am a vegetarian, but even if I weren't, I still wouldn't myself be comfortable with killing other creatures in the animal kingdom, which was what the question seems to ask about. Of course killing plants and fungi and bacteria is not something I am against, because I draw the line at animals, but I don't see how this argument couldn't also be used to justify cannibalism.
Potemkin wrote:There are health arguments as to why cannibalism is a bad idea (rather like incest, in fact). As for the killing of animals, almost everyone is in favour of killing some animals. The issue is really about where we draw the line. Is it okay to kill the plasmodium parasite which causes malaria? What about cockroaches? What about rats? We don't eat rats, but we slaughter them wholesale for other reasons.
Local Localist wrote:Yes, when I say I'm not comfortable with killing animals, again, that is on a personal level, in relation to the question. There are still significant differences between how I value human life and how I value animal life, in that I am not opposed to culling entire populations of animals where necessary, or indeed to peoples such as the Inuit subsisting off the flesh of other mammals (though I will say that the 'wouldn't hurt a fly' stereotype generally holds up in my case). I would describe myself as a 'pragmatic vegetarian', in that I am primarily opposed to unnecessary mass consumption of meat, modern industrial farming practices, and scientific experimentation on animals.
Potemkin wrote:Fair enough. That's more or less my position too, with the exception that I personally eat meat. Moderation and pragmatism in all things.
As for the OP, I would say that humans generally kill other humans for the same reasons we kill other animals - for pragmatic, practical reasons. Or just because we don't care. Killing other people for an abstract ideal is generally not what happens - even things like Hitler's Holocaust of the Jews or Stalin's Purges were done - from the point of view of the perpetrators at least - for eminently pragmatic and practical reasons. Hitler seems to have genuinely (if falsely) believed that the Jews were trying to destroy Germany, and Stalin seems to have genuinely (if falsely) believed that the Purges were absolutely necessary if the Soviet Union was to survive.
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