Download Citizen Killings Liberalism, State Policy and Moral Risk by Deane-Peter Baker PDF

By Deane-Peter Baker

Citizen Killings: Liberalism, nation coverage and ethical chance bargains a flooring breaking systematic method of formulating moral public coverage on all types of 'citizen killings', which come with killing in self-defence, abortion, infanticide, assisted suicide, euthanasia and killings performed via deepest army contractors and so-called 'foreign fighters'.

Where so much techniques to those matters commence with the assumptions of a few or different basic method of ethics, Deane-Peter Baker argues that life-or-death coverage judgements of this sort can be pushed at the beginning via a attractiveness of the foremost boundaries dedication to political liberalism locations at the nation, rather the requirement to recognize electorate' correct to lifestyles and the primary of liberal neutrality. the place those rules come into rigidity Baker exhibits that they could on occasion be defused when it comes to a reasonableness try, and in different situations addressed during the program of what he calls the 'risk of injury principle'. The e-book additionally explores the query of what measures voters and different states could legitimately absorb reaction to states that fail to enforce morally applicable guidelines concerning citizen killings.

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Example text

If there is no state to protect me, and my life is at threat by marauding bands of heavily armed bandits, then automatic weapons and explosive ordnance might well be required for necessary, proportionate and effective self-defense. Likewise, imagine an unlikely but conceptually coherent hypothetical future situation in which the government of the United States has collapsed, leaving no legitimate authority in power over the territory formerly occupied by the United States of America. Imagine further that a hostile nuclear-armed country is poised to take advantage of the situation in order to exact revenge for perceived past harms, by launching nuclear strikes onto the territory of what was the United States.

1 Based on similar arguments to McMahan’s, Nicholas Dixon has argued for a total ban on the private ownership of handguns,2 the class of firearm most commonly used to commit homicide and suicide3 in the United States, and also the class of firearm most closely associated with self-defense. In this chapter I argue that McMahan and Dixon, and others like Hugh LaFollette who make similar arguments, base their positions on an important mistake. Most centrally, they confuse the risk or likelihood of being confronted by an attacker intent on serious or lethal harm with the right to defend oneself when faced by such an 19 20 CITIZEN KILLINGS attacker.

If I can, without undue risk of serious harm to myself, disarm an attacker who intends to kill me, then employing lethal means such as a firearm might be proportional but not necessary. On the other hand, if I am protecting myself against an attacker who, despite her best intentions, clearly does not present any danger of lethal or serious harm, then it would be disproportionate for me to shoot her. So Dixon is correct to say that these requirements are constraints on the right to self-defense.

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