The idea behind the Equivalence Thesis is not that every individual case of letting die is equally as bad as every individual case of killing. Now, how might wedge arguments, when combined with RU, provide a defense of the active-passive distinction? He will inherit a lot of money if the cousin dies. Both the Equivalence Thesis and the view that the right to life is a negative right are plausible enough individually. We currently have in place a rule that prohibits active euthanasia. Smith will gain a large inheritance if his six-year-old cousin dies. Likewise, the fact that a particular killing is targeted against a person — with rights — and not against another living thing that lacks rights will be an intrinsic feature of the situation.

Smith will gain a large inheritance if his six-year-old cousin dies. None of this reflects on the wrongness of the actions that led to the obligations. Either way, the patient is dead. Txt or read online. An act is then said to be right if it conforms to a valid rule and wrong if it violates the rule.

That is simply implausible. History of Western Philosophy. Some philosophers, however, have argued that common sense is wrong about this. None of this reflects on the wrongness of the actions that led to the obligations.

Equivalence thesis rachels

We absorb the prejudices of our culture and the mistakes of our parents, mix in the pronouncements of our religion, add the influence of our selfishness, and then regard the resulting belief as the merest common sense.

The central claim in this paper rachelw that the commitment to the problematic thesis arises not from accepting the Equivalence Thesis but from accepting the Equivalence Thesis in conjunction with the negative rights view. Rachels believes that this pair of. Due to his drunkenness he falls down himself and drowns. Thus he was not behaving immorally. Find it on Scholar.


Equivalence thesis james rachels

In cases of active non- voluntary euthanasia. But, in light of wedge arguments, there is good reason to suppose rachwls a rule that permits active euthanasia could have serious negative consequences.

rachels equivalence thesis

Studia Philosophica 50, Persons are according to Singer not replaceable; however, infants are since they fall under the total-view version of classical utilitarianism. Click here to sign up. For instance, if we allow voluntary active euthanasia, we will soon allow nonvoluntary active euthanasia, and this in turn will lead to euthanasia for those who are a nuisance to society e.

It sees being moral, not as a matter of faithfulness to abstract rules or divine laws, but as a matter of doing what is best for those who are affected by our conduct.

rachels equivalence thesis

This is the view thesiis society ought to adopt a rule equivalencf its acceptance would have better overall consequences than any competing rule could have in that society. Utilitarianism in Normative Ethics. I turn first to the consideration of the case in favor of the Equivalence Thesis to elucidate the principle. We allow people to die, for example, when we fail to contribute money to famine-relief efforts; but even if we feel somewhat guilty, we do not consider ourselves murderers.

Either way, the patient is dead. Helen Frowe – – In J.

James Rachels on Euthanasia Notes – Applied Ethics

This failure was instructive insofar as it clarified that the Equivalence Thesis is a claim about events specifically act-type events rather than on the agents in those situations. Nor do we feel like accessories to murder when we fail to give blood, sign an organ-donor card, or do any of the other things that could save lives. Killing people is, in general, wrong. Husak – – Journal of Medical Ethics 5 4: This thesis holds that the bare difference between a doing and an allowing makes no moral difference.


Mere Sophistry With Words? This is a more specific version of the idea that there is no equivalrnce difference between making something happen and allowing it to happen. If we accept also that a right to property is a negative right, then we must admit that Andrews violates the right to property but Brown does not.

rachels equivalence thesis

But with the formulation of the argument here given that question is avoided. If we are truly to compare killing vs. The End of Life Euthanasia and Morality.

It would be very kind of her to reconsider and offer at least half of the money she had earned, but justice does not demand that. With only a little thrashing about, the child drowns all by himself, “accidentally,” as Jones watches and does nothing. Cases for which this issue is relevant include people in a permanent coma and persons reduced to an 10 These conditions are: With a final flutter, the form slips behind the cabinet, escaping the notice of the mail carrier and becoming “accidentally” lost.