General Question

thegodfather's avatar

If it's a moral right to give life as one chooses, why isn't it a moral right to take life?

Asked by thegodfather (750points) October 10th, 2008
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

21 Answers

dalepetrie's avatar

because it’s not life vs. life, it’s creation vs. destruction

seVen's avatar

Because the final authority of life & death isn’t a human, it’s God.

Judi's avatar

Lurve to you Dale, but I think that’s the shortest answer I’ve ever seen you give!

JackAdams's avatar

And Gawd, as we all know, is the greatest mass-murderer on record, IF you believe the story of the so-called Great Flood

I do not.

seVen's avatar

Yes, God must excercise righteosnes to be a God, those people who died were wicked , God gave them time to repent but they rejected so God gave them wrath as their deprived minds fallowed evil.

poofandmook's avatar

How does God feel about atrocious spelling?

gailcalled's avatar

“Fallow evil” is an interesting trope, if one wants to bother.

Noon's avatar

Leaving god out of this, it has been proven that murder is considered wrong by the large majority of humans. This means regardless of your religion or lack there of murder is wrong. It’s not something we are taught but rather something we’ve been programmed (through natural selection) to believe. It doesn’t make any sense for the procreation of your species for it to be considered OK to murder. So you must consider this a human constant, when it does happen (ie. An individual murder’s someone) it is considered wrong by the majority of the population and that person is no longer fit for breading.

Now the problem arises when we as a people are able to make killing moral. This is usually done under the guise of religion. As soon as you are able to make a switch turn “Us vs. Them” in your head, all bets are off. You are no longer killing your own species, you are killing something else and therefor it becomes OK.

I’m no evolutionary biologist, if someone can explain this better than me, please do.

JackAdams's avatar

seVen”, I wonder how many kids under the age of 13 are included in your comments about wicked people?

Apologies for the off-topic truth…

Bri_L's avatar

I don’t understand the phrase “moral right”.

JackAdams's avatar

Neither do those who are.

scamp's avatar

@Bri_L I don’t either. I wonder what the asker means by the right to “give life” also??

jballou's avatar

The question itself has a faulty premise. It’s not a moral right to give life. It’s simply a biological directive to reproduce.

If someone truly had the ability to give life to that which did not have life (i.e. bring a dead body or an inanimate object to life) then it would certainly NOT be a moral right for them to use this ability. At the very least, the whole thing would stand on fuzzy moral ground. Just like taking a life. Taking a life isn’t just murder- it’s also eating meat and giving people the death penalty- and those are all also standing on fuzzy moral ground.

cyndyh's avatar

It’s in the frizzer.

cheebdragon's avatar

well someone has to keep the populations down, god just isn’t working fast enough these days…
oh shit, now I’m going to be next on gods “kill” list…

thegodfather's avatar


That’s why I qualified the question with “if”. If it’s not a moral right to give life, then it follows that it’s likely not a moral right to take life either. But because so many people consider it an inherent right that ought to be protected by law to have a child whenever one chooses, I wonder what those people think, ethically, about the taking of life. Their moral reasoning would need to be questioned, I think, for thinking that it’s a right to give life but not a right to take it.

Creation vs. destruction… I don’t see how that changes anything about the moral implications. The person who is destroyed is forced against their will to lose their life. The person who is born is forced against their will to gain their life.

jasonjackson's avatar

Well, if you’re just talking about what “many people” think, then I’d say that in that sense, it’s just as much a moral right to take life at times as it is to give life, according to a lot of people. For instance, most westerners think that killing a large number of Germans to stop Hitler’s power grab in WWII was the morally correct thing to do.

Collectively, we as a species tend to find justifications for those things that our biological imperatives compel us to do in any case.. people are driven, at times, both to reproduce and to kill each other in competition for resources or to protect ourselves – so both actions are a “moral right”, according to a lot of people.

Interestingly, I realized as I typed that competing for resources and protecting ourselves are probably both seen as “moral rights”, ultimately, because they allow us to continue more effectively reproducing.. so maybe you could even say that taking life is a “moral right”, to many people, if/when it’s done in service of allowing more life to be given..?

krose1223's avatar

Who knows what moral is? Everyone’s opinion on that is different so how do we know where to set the bar?

cheebdragon's avatar

people still have morals??

Skyrail's avatar

Let me get this straight, I’m not intending on answering because I don’t know how to. But is the question referring to general creation vs. destruction or the topics of birth, abortion, euthanasia, possibly murder and such.

And whatever it is that controls life, if there is anything at all, it is both equally a giver and a taker. All things that die will have to have been born, and all things that are born have to die.

jballou's avatar

@thegodfather – I have a few questions for you, because I don’t understand your position:

1. What does the word “moral” mean to you?

2. Are you talking about humanity in general or just the U.S. because it is certainly NOT a right protected by law to have children whenever you like in other parts of the world, specifically referring to China.

3. “The person who is born is forced against their will to gain their life” – I don’t understand what you mean by this… how can a person have a will if they are not yet born? You’re drawing a correlation to a situation that can’t possibly exist.

4. You’ve said that it is a right to give life. What do you mean by “a right”? Rights are (in my definition) a philosophical invention for describing a socially authorized act. Rights aren’t hard and fast or set in stone- they evolve as people and society evolve. It is considered now a right for people to choose any religion they see fit. This was not always true. Some people consider it a right for person to pursue a relationship with whomever they like. Some people do not. There is no “right” to give life. You do not have to give a woman’s body moral permission for it to give birth. It is simple biologically there. So I ask again, what do you mean by “a right”?

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