Garett Hardin Lifeboat Ethics Analysis

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1) Narveson believes that people have a right to self-defence since they have the intrinsic right to protect their own lives, family and property. He proposes that if we are not allowed to protect a right then the very claim that it is a right is meaningless. As such, Narveson maintains this is a legitimate right since people have the freedom and human rights to live their own lives. Thus, acts of aggression can be seen as violating a person's basic human rights and that the situation basically boils down to a contest between the right-holder and the violator. In this scenario, it is the right-holder and not the right-violator that should be defended. If we follow this line of reasoning, then the hypothetical killing of an aggressor is justifiable…show more content…
He compares rich nations to lifeboats adrift at sea and poor nations to the open water. In the framework, we can clearly see that the people in the lifeboats, or rich nations, are in a better position than those who would probably die in the water. Hardin states that since the space in each boat is finite, there is no way to save everyone. He proposes 3 scenarios and their likely outcomes as justification for his views. In these scenarios Hardin states that each lifeboat has 50 people but can hold 60 at full capacity, however he also states that there are hundreds of drowning people in the water around each lifeboat. In the first scenario the passengers of the lifeboats let all the people in the water onto their boats, which causes all of the boats to sink. As such, Hardin claims that if rich nations help the poor nations to the full extent of their ability they would not have enough land and food for everyone and that attempting to distribute these resources between all the nations equally would result in downfall for each nation. In his second scenario the passengers of the lifeboats are willing to only let the additional 10 people they can conceivably support onto the boat and let the others drown. In this case, how would the 10 people be chosen and why would helping them be morally superior to assisting the others? Hardin argues that this scenario is unsatisfactory…show more content…
He argues that a human fetus is essentially the same as an adult fetus and as such, it has the same right to live that an adult possesses. Marquis questions society's regard of fetuses as nearly human and posits instead that a fetus is a valued life that could have been every bit as important as that of an adult human and should be given the same rights and considerations. He regards killing as the prevention of a possible future life, and with this theory in mind, therefore states that killing a fetus prevents it's entire possible future, which would be longer than an adult which has lived a part of his or her's possible future

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