Authors
Fritz Allhoff, J.D., Ph.D.
Western Michigan University
Abstract
In this paper, I argue for the permissibility of torture in idealized cases by application of separation of cases: if torture is permissible given any of the dominant moral theories (and if one of those is correct), then torture is permissible simpliciter and I can discharge the tricky business of trying to adjudicate among conflicting moral views. To be sure, torture is not permissible on all the dominant moral theories as at least Kantianism will prove especially recalcitrant to granting moral license of torture, even in idealized cases. Rather than let the Kantian derail my central argument, I directly argue against Kantianism (and other views with similar commitments) on the grounds that, if they cannot accommodate the intuitions in ticking time-bomb cases, they simply cannot be plausible moral views—these arguments come in both foundationalist and coherentist strains. Finally, I postulate that, even if this paper has dealt with idealized cases, it paves the way for the justification of torture in the real world by removing some candidate theories (e.g., Kantianism) and allowing others that both could and are likely to justify real-world torture
Keywords Applied Philosophy  General Interest
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Reprint years 2006
ISBN(s) 0739-098X
DOI 10.5840/ijap200519213
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References found in this work BETA

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Consequentialism and Harsh Interrogations.Matthew K. Wynia - 2005 - American Journal of Bioethics 5 (1):4 – 6.

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Citations of this work BETA

Heuristics and Life-Sustaining Treatments.Adam Feltz & Stephanie Samayoa - 2012 - Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 9 (4):443-455.
Dirty Hands and the Romance of the Ticking Bomb Terrorist: A Humean Account.Christopher J. Finlay - 2011 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 14 (4):421-442.
The War on Terror and the Ethics of Exceptionalism.Fritz Allhoff - 2009 - Journal of Military Ethics 8 (4):265-288.
Physicians at War.Fritz Allhoff - 2010 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 24 (1):101-114.

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