Please, before reading further, check out the previous three posts on Autonomy, Benevolence, and Non-Maleficence, preferably in that order. This will allow you to have a context as to what this blog post is about. This is #4 of seven, and the others will come in the next few days, as part of a”First Seven Days, First Seven Posts” challenge to myself.
Sounds simple enough to define: do what is lawful, equitable, and justified. The difficulty is in defining it pragmatically.
See, what may seem as just for one person may seem completely unethical to another. Similar to Non-Maleficence, where does one draw the line when it comes to the “you versus gang” situation? Is it lawful to attack your attackers, to enact revenge before a court has judged who are the criminals and victims? Is that equitable and justified? I’m sure there are advocates for no direct harming of your assailants, as there are those who believe in “preventative measures”.
Well, let’s analyse the first option: no direct harming of your assailants. If you were to just run away from them, throwing obstacles onto the ground in hopes that your pursuers would stumble…would that be justice? Not really, since they still have the ability to harm others, and may attempt to attack you again in future. Furthermore, it wouldn’t be highly effective in helping the police capture the criminals, who are the lawful defenders of the victims and do-gooders of society.
On the other hand, “preventative measures” may be performed if you believe that disabling the attacking capabilities of your assailants directly is justified and equitable. This could be a single bleeding cut, upwards in severity to severing major ligaments in the arms or legs, puncturing the trachea/lungs, puncturing the heart, crushing the skull, de-limbing, to straight up decapitation and explosive obliteration. Now, in war, it seems fair to leave traps to “prevent” enemy capture, yet in civilian lifestyle, it’s illegal. Why?
I mean, they’re both cases of human to human interaction. The only problem with that argument, one might say, is that one should fight “like with like”, that it’s only equitable and lawful if all combatants have similar-level training and expertise. But then, what’s to stop someone learning to shoot or use weapons, or to use their body to efficiently take down an enemy? Who is there to stop people from learning martial arts for the sake of assassination? No one, really. So is there really anything unlawful when there is no regulations to prevent people with background checks?
Thank you for reading, dear reader. If you would like to see the other three articles on Confidentiality, Fidelity, and Veracity, like this post and subscribe to the blog with your e-mail or WordPress account. Comment down below on your opinions, and spread the discussion on social media, if you wish. DFTBA!