The Act Of Utilitarianism

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Our actions in everyday situations and scenarios result in either good or bad results. They are based on our own moral observations for what’s right and wrong. The theory of Utilitarianism applies to most people’s lives based on personal moral decisions that focus on the positive outcomes it produces.

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In the article Famine, Affluence, and Morality by Peter Singer, he argues that if it is in our power to prevent something bad from happening, without thereby sacrificing anything of comparable moral importance, we ought, morally, to do it. Singer applies utilitarianism as a main ethical theory in his argument to further his point of view in the article.

In an opposing view of distinctions between moral obligations, the article Act Utilitarianism: Account of Right-Making Characteristics or Decision-Making Procedure? by Eugene Bales, he argues the importance of maintaining a sharp distinction between decision making procedures, and accounts of what make right acts right. Bales challenges and argues the fact of applying act utilitarianism theory to moral situations and is a weak way to establish a problem occuring. By identifying the use of Utilitarianism in these two articles, one can distinguish which argument is more prevalent to their moral obligations and decisions. As Singer begins his argument in the article Famine, Affluence, and Morality, he first informs and puts the reader in a position where they are reminded of the suffering and poverty people are going through in other countries.

Singer applies this by appealing Pathos in the beginning of the article to further his point in emotion and tragedy based on a moral viewpoint. Before Singer introduces his argument he states his assumptions and moral position in the article, following with the statement ?those who disagree read no further.’ This establishes a firm standpoint in where Singer stands in his argument, because it shows that he values the importance of your moral position and your use of time. Singer shows that we in affluent countries like the U.S. have a moral obligation to give away more than we actually do in international aid for famine relief. He thinks we need to alter our way of life in order to help others. Furthermore, Singer has two main premises in his argument to further his conclusion. His first premises is, I can prevent people dying from starvation by giving more money to famine relief than I do. This leads to his second premises, By giving more money to famine relief than I do, I would not be sacrificing anything morally significant. Which leads on to Singer’s conclusion for the argument, Therefore, I should give more to famine relief than I do.

Singer uses examples such as scenarios and giving to charity as strong inductive generalizations in his argument. He did this to target the majority of the population’s similar moral values towards this issue.

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