David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Journal of Global Ethics 1 (2):153 – 176 (2005)
In this article, I investigate actions that the United States took against Costa Rica during the 1980s in order to argue that current discussions about global justice and its foundations are flawed in three ways. First, it misidentifies the parties of global justice as individual citizens. Second, it conceptualizes global justice as exclusively a distributive justice concern and, as a result, it misidentifies what constitutes a global injustice as being the adverse fate of individuals who live in a poor nation. Finally, the current debate provides no guidance in what must be considered to identify the specific obligations one nation may have to another nation. Given these three problems, I maintain that we conceptualize global injustice as an issue of social justice rather than one exclusively of distributive justice. This will require identifying nations as the parties to global justice, at least in certain cases, and realizing that our goal is to remedy oppressive global structures of power. Utilizing the social justice I propose will put us on the road toward achieving justice across the Americas.
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