Torture (Google eBook)
The “war on terror” has brought the subject of torture to the forefront of public attention. In contrast to other discussions that focus narrowly on the practice of torture, and condemn it under any and all circumstances, Mirko Bagaric and Julie Clarke argue that to take this position is to live in a moral vacuum. The subject of torture causes our emotions to conflict with our reason. When we have a choice between saving the life of an innocent person, and not harming a terrorist or other wrongdoer, it is indecent to absolutely prefer the interests of the wrongdoer. In contrast, they propose a moral standard where each individual’s interest counts equally. Within this standard, the ostensibly brutal act of torture may be permissible if it has the potential to achieve compassionate outcomes in the form of saving innocent lives.
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Overview of the Torture Debate
Reality and Legal Position
3 The Moral Status of Torture
4 The Slippery Slope Illusion
5 Lifesaving Torture Is a Humane Practice
6 Torture Is Effective
7 Torture Is Not Antidemocratic
abuses Alan Dershowitz AMNESTY INT’L Amnesty International argued ban on torture Bernard Williams bomb chapter circumstances claims Coercive Interrogation Committee against Torture condoning consequentialist context critics decision defense dehumanize despite detainees Dworkin effective ethic evidence example fact Geneva Convention Guantánamo Bay H. L. A. Hart happiness harm hostages Human Rights individuals inflicted innocent lives intentionally left blank interests Iraq Israel Israeli J. J. C. Smart justice justifiable killed large number life-saving torture META-ETHICS Mirko Bagaric moral theories morally permissible Nozick O’Rourke one’s OVERVIEW pain Palestinian Peter Singer physical integrity police practices prisoners prohibition against torture proposal punishing the innocent reasons regarding relevant information reported responsibility right to physical rights theories rights-based theories Ronald Dworkin rule utilitarianism save innocent self-defense situation slippery slope argument terrorist threat tion Torture Debate torture is morally torture is permissible Torture Warrant ture U.N. Doc UDHR United utilitarianism wrongdoer