Don't know, don't kill: Moral ignorance, culpability, and caution

Philosophical Studies 136 (1):59-97 (2007)
This paper takes on several distinct but related tasks. First, I present and discuss what I will call the “Ignorance Thesis,” which states that whenever an agent acts from ignorance, whether factual or moral, she is culpable for the act only if she is culpable for the ignorance from which she acts. Second, I offer a counterexample to the Ignorance Thesis, an example that applies most directly to the part I call the “Moral Ignorance Thesis.” Third, I argue for a principle—Don’t Know, Don’t Kill—that supports the view that the purported counterexample actually is a counterexample. Finally, I suggest that my arguments in this direction can supply a novel sort of argument against many instances of killing and eating certain sorts of animals.
Keywords Moral ignorance  Blameless ignorance  Culpability  Blameworthiness  Caution  Recklessness  Responsibility  Contextualism  Abortion  Vegetarianism
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DOI 10.2307/40208767
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References found in this work BETA
Thomas Scanlon (1998). What We Owe to Each Other. Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Keith DeRose (1992). Contextualism and Knowledge Attributions. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):913-929.
Judith Jarvis Thomson (1971). A Defense of Abortion. Philosophy and Public Affairs 1 (1):47-66.

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Brian Weatherson (2013). Running Risks Morally. Philosophical Studies 167 (1):1-23.

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