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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 1999 5:40 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 19, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 55
Location: Portsmouth,NH,US
Messieurs Canna and Madonna,
Fact is, I see no major ethical dilemma here, even given my attempt at "sweetening the pot." Kill the murderer. Game. Set. Match.

I have at times been in a compromised position vis a vis a person without good judgment. We have to have proper limits, right? I ask others specifically, will you commit yourselves to a final, life-ending judgment, even if it means using your bare hands to strangle a mass murderer? Is this really a major dilemma for anyone?

Michael


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 1999 5:55 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 157
Location: Evansville, IN, USA
"we must choose between two evils and hope we choose the lesser!"
- Van Canna

I find this quote to be of great interest. Do you believe that it is "evil" to shoot the deranged man? Why?

1) Because it is to his back? I.e. a violation of some code of honor conduct. Knowing you I find this unlikely.

2) Because he is deranged and not responsible for his actions? My reply to this is who is to judge his responsibility and role in his condition. Perhaps he is blameless, but perhaps not. Better to reside in the moment and take action against the action of the man and not the man himself.

3) Other reasons?

I do not see this choice as a choice between two evils. Defense of the community and the protection of others is not an evil. It is killing, but not all killing is by definition evil, although certainly there are those who would have you believe this. Assuming that the death of Adolf Hitler could have prevented WW2 and you were given the chance to travel back in time to kill him, would you take? I doubt you would find many who would refuse. Would they be commiting an evil act? They certainly would be commiting murder by any legal definition since they would have forethought their actions. But would it be evil? I don't believe so.

So, I do ask you with respect, why do you say this is a choice between "two evils"?

Osu!
Jason

P.s. "1) Because it is to his back? I.e. a violation of some code of honor conduct. Knowing you I find this unlikely." After re-reading this post it occured to me that this could imply I think Van has no honor! This is not my implication at all. What I mean to say is that he understands that honor on the field of battle is dubious at best, especially with regards to self defense. I suspect given the chance to throw sand in an opponents face, kick to groin, bite (well maybe not these days), scratch, use an improvised weapon, attack from behind, etc Van like anybody truly committed to self defense would take the opportunity. When an army outflanks the enemy and attacks from behind they call it a tactical advantage, why shouldn't we?

[This message has been edited by Jason Bernard (edited 06-04-99).]


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 1999 6:00 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 11, 1999 6:01 am
Posts: 30491
Robb,

I would have thought by now your arm had gotten pretty sore by the casting out of all those red herrings under the guise of divergent viewpoints !

The facts of my hypothetical are not mine ! That was prepared fodder for debate submitted at a legal seminar I attended !!

You will continue to evade the question !


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Van Canna


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 1999 6:17 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 25, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 181
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Mr. Canna:

I have answered your question, and now you have answered mine. Thanks.

Peace
Robb in Sacramento


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 1999 2:27 pm 
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Robb,

The deranged mass murderer is using an "assault" rifle to kill the innocents below ! Next to him , in the large gear bag , is a foot long bayonet ! He has just caught a glimpse of you rubbernecking from behind the roof air conditioning vent concealing and trapping you ! He now smiles with a malevolent glint while he "fixes bayonet" !

"Contra malum mortis non est medicamen in hortis " { against evil death there is no remedy in the gardens }

Peace be with you ,


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Van Canna


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 5:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 1999 6:01 am
Posts: 159
Location: Valrico, Florida, USA
Sensei,


This one you make too easy.
You said, "the only way you can stop him is to kill him from behind with the handgun you happen to have"
I agree with Sensei Mattson, "If the person is carrying a weapon, he/she must have already made this decision."

Beyond that tho...You said I had a shot from behind...it would be a strange situation where I couldn't choose a NON-fatal target, and still accomplish the mission...But if I had to...He's dead.


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 5:57 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 1999 6:01 am
Posts: 159
Location: Valrico, Florida, USA
Sensei,
You're asking us a question of moral ethics. When you boil it down, you've got several variants of relativistic ethics, or a few variants of absolute systems. I belive this universe was created based on an absolute, non-relativistic, system. Of these various systems, I believe, of the ones I know, that the best system is a heirarchical absolute system....in a nut shell...It is never wrong to do something, or to not do something, as long as your choice is higher up the heirarchy than the alternatives.

So, Killing him is fine...disabling is better...doing noting is not acceptable.


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 6:48 am 
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Hi Rick ,

It is the dilemma that presupposes killing is the only way to stop him ! You must address that question first !

The shooting at non fatal body targets is an alternative not proposed by the dilemma ; however we can offer alternatives and discuss them only after we have decided the initial moral riddle !

You write "I agree with Sensei Mattson, "If the person is carrying a weapon,
he/she must have already made this decision.
Killing him is fine...disabling is better...doing nothing is not
acceptable."

This exercise underscores a common problem: Even if a gun is handy , many people will be unable to pull the trigger because they find it difficult to reconcile themselves to the concept of using lethal force upon a criminal to spare themselves or others from being brutally murdered! Also lots of people will freeze in panic with a gun in their hands but a useless appendage !

You said " killing him is fine "

Lots of people out there who feel it's immoral to take the life of another human for any reason , will constantly challenge you ! What if someone said to you " How can you be so arrogant as to take upon yourself the power over another human life ? "

What would be your answer to them ?

More importantly, what argument will you use with yourself to defend your decision to resort to lethal force? What makes you think it is moral to kill him ?

Thank you for participating in this very intense topic !

Peace ,




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Van Canna


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 2:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 16, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 6022
Location: Mount Dora, Florida
If you get the chance watch the movie "Siege" (was on Pay per view last night). Van's proposed dilemma, in a couple of variations, cropped up througout the movie. In the first instance, terrorist held a bus and it's occupants captive. A CIA operative knew the terrorist planned to activate the bomb, regardless of efforts the FBI were attempting. She ordered the sharpshooters, who were in position, to 'take out' the terrorists, even though innocent victims would be killed in the process.

The FBI agent in charge could not accept this choice, electing to 'negotiate'. Unfortunately, the CIA's recommendation, in this instance, was correct.

Great movie with lots of moral dilemmas. I don't want to spoil it for those who haven't seen it yet, but perhaps in a few weeks we can discuss some of the other issues raised.

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GEM


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 4:59 pm 
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George-san ,

How timely ! This subject being discussed is the ultimate in the "open sesame" of mind set ! Yet some people don't have a clue as we have seen , and will continue in their denial and equivocation of ideology that at times, extreme counter- vailing force can become a moral obligation by socially acceptable persons in self defense and for the greater good of mankind !
The lotus eaters and bible thumpers of our Uechi society should be reminded of how Joshua, Samson ,David, and many other old testament icons must have " negotiated" the interpretation of the sixth commandment as : " Thou shall not kill , unless thou hast a very good reason "

Millions of people today would be alive if that concept were to have been more liberally embraced ! It has been suggested in many elucidating essays , no doubt you are aware , that lots of these objectors or "negotiators" hide cowardice behind 'morality' arguments !

And for more fun in debating these issues , here is another COUPLE conundrums for the " negotiators" ----

1] WHAT IS THE DEFINITION OF " KILLER " VS. "MURDERER" ?

2] IS MAN KILLING THE NATURAL CONDITION OF MAN -OR IS IT NOT ?

Peace,


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Van Canna


[This message has been edited by Van Canna (edited 06-06-99).]


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 8:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 28, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 2437
Location: MARSHFIELD, MA. USA
Van Sensei:

sorry to drop in at the end of this.

Please God give me the courage to SHOOT.

By the way, do I have enough gun?

Killing has been the natural state of man, how long this will continue is unknown.

Murder, in the context of this discussion, would be what the terrorist is doing. Perhaps he doesn't think so, but thats not my problem.

What's the difference-the motivation.

Excellent topic.

J.

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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 8:41 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 311
Location: Washington DC area, USA
Sorry I didn't log in sooner!!!

My definitions:

Killer--someone who can kill. A person who can take the life of another human being.

Murderer--A subset of the group of killers. Someone who kills another human being for no justifiable reason by any code of honor, or morality or spirituality. This person kills for pleasure, or out of rage or anger, revenge, or jealously, not to protect or preserve life.

Is it the natural condition of human beings to want to kill each other? Of course. Absolutely. I honestly believe that it is natural for us to want to behave like animals and destroy each other. I think that the natural condition of humanity is based on greed, fear, and lust. But there is also a part of our nature that wants to do better, that wants to show compassion, love, sharing and that part is our spirit. It is the classic conflict of the carnal human verses the spiritual human, and it occurs in all of us all the time. Our spiritual beliefs are supposed to teach us to not let the flesh rule the person, but the spirit.

I would NOT want to kill the Roof Shooter, but basically, I believe that if you go around randomly killing people you have already forfeited your life. I'd feel very bad about it, but I would do it because I believe in protecting good people from evil ones. I'd pray and ask God to forgive me after I neutralized the shooter. I know I would intend to try to shoot to wound, but I think instinct would kick in and my bullets would find themselves hitting the guy in the center of his body.

But I can see how there are those who would not.

The argument that fuels those of us who are totally against killing is that a) only God has the right to take a human life, and b) if we kill the shooter, we are no better than he is. This is despite the fact that cops, soldiers, and others are paid to use guns in order to keep order in a society. There are also those of us who believe that God will take care of the shooter, or that the shooter will reap the karmic consequences of his actions.

------------------
Email: <A HREF="mailto:creativebrother@yahoo.com">creativebrother@yahoo.com</A>
Web Page: http://creativebrother.freehosting.net


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 Post subject: MORAL DILEMMA
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 1999 10:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 927
Location: Long Island
Before and after I was in the army, I was in the National Guard. My company was assigned rifle duty for riot control instead of the baton (Since the Kent State situation, baton's were introduced - I imagine that is still used today) Part of my job was to hunt down/look for snipers. (I even played a sniper during training) (BTW: we were all Infantryman) Anyway there were lots of police officers in my unit. They taught me a lot. Similar kinds of scenarios like the one descibed above were discussed. The answer was "Shoot to stop". I'd ask, Kill? Wound? "Shoot to stop!" was the answer.

Now, could I do it? I'd like to think I would but since I was never in that predicament in real life, I would not know until I was.

In Saving Private Ryan, did anybody predict the way the interpreter acted in that building? What was your emotional state just watching what he did? Compassion? Rage?


Scott


[This message has been edited by Scott Danziger (edited 06-06-99).]


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